— Vickie Rock, a Disgruntled Citizen
Over the past year, we’ve heard one claim after another ad nauseum from Republican members of Congress as to how the IRS is discriminating against Republican groups in obtaining 501c4 tax-exempt status. Frankly, that’s a status that NO group promoting political activity should be granted, period.
Not one single Republican/Tea Party group was actually found to have been denied 501c4 status or had such status revoked. Yet that didn’t matter. Rep. Issa and his minions in a flagrant display of classic Obsessive Compulsive Dysfunction kept spreading lies with the help of their FoxNews mouthpieces. Truth be known, it was NOT Teapublican leaning groups who had their 501c4 status denied/revoked, but Democratic groups, EmergeAmerica and their state affiliates, like EmergeNV. (Emerge educates/trains/ prepares Democratic women to run for office.)
Last week, in the U.S. House, HR 3865, the “Stop Targeting of Political Beliefs by the IRS Act of 2014,” was passed by a 243-176 vote. A sum total of 14 Democrats voted for passage of the bill, and it’s now being touted as a “bipartisan” effort. (Really? What’s the magic number to classify a bill as “bi-partisan”? One, Two, Five, Fourteen?) It’s unclear, though, exactly what, if anything, it’s intended or expected to correct. It looks more like an intentional perpetuation of the conflict we’ve now been experiencing for the past year.
Democrats who voted FOR passage:
- Barber (AZ)
- Barrow (GA)
- Costa (CA)
- Cuellar (TX)
- Gallego (TX)
- Kirkpatrick (AZ)
- Larsen (WA)
- Matheson (UT)
- McIntyre (NC)
- Murphy (FL)
- Owens (NY)
- Peterson (MN)
- Rahall (WV)
- Sinema (AZ)
HR3865 mandates that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) standards and definitions that were in effect as of January 1, 2010, that were being used to determine whether an organization qualifies for tax-exempt status because it operate exclusively for social welfare shall remain in effect for just ONE YEAR after enactment of this Act. (What? Do they think between voter suppression and the promotion of bogus propaganda using these groups that they’ll be able to take both houses using, abusing and obliterating all other political contenders within the next year?) The lack of clarity of these standards has resulted in confusion and difficulty administering the Code, as well as delays in the processing of applications for tax-exempt status. Passage would prohibit the Secretary of the Treasury from issuing, revising, or finalizing any regulation (including proposed regulations), revenue ruling, or other guidance not limited to a particular taxpayer relating to such standards and definitions.
So let’s see, HR3865 mandates that the IRS must keep the debatable and erroneous skim milk definition of “EXCLUSIVELY” currently being used by the IRS—that same definition that re-defined “EXCLUSIVELY” as “PRIMARILY”—that same definition that has yielded fodder for Rep. Issa’s bogus claims of retaliation against 501c4 groups of the Teapublican persuasion:
- limited to the object or objects designated: exclusive attention to what’s cited
- limiting or limited to possession, control, or use by a single individual or group (those performing social welfare functions)
- an exclusive right (as to sell a particular product, or in this case to be entitled to tax-exempt status to those performing social welfare functions)
- for the most part; mostly; chiefly; mainly; largely; generally; some of the time
HR3865 looks to me to be nothing more than a king-size order of obsessive compulsive dysfunction with a rabid side order of bipolar dysfunction. Should the Senate be so foolish as to let this bill see the light of day and take a vote which yields passage, they’ll be able to rant, rave and second guess each and every decision the IRS makes, claiming that somehow, the President is behind each and every one of those decision. Maybe they’ll even go so far as to institute actual impeachment proceedings based on their bogus misinformation campaigns. On the other hand, maybe they should just take a good hard look in their mirror instead and then make a serious decision to seek medical help. The Affordable Care Act can help them deal with their dysfunctional behavior.
- Proposed IRS rule change: A wolf in sheep’s clothing
- WHITE HOUSE STATEMENT OF ADMINISTRATION POLICY — H.R. 3865 – Temporary Prohibition on IRS from Modifying
House Vote 69 – H.R.3865: On Passage — NY Times
- League of Women Voters Strongly Opposes HR 3865