Via-NY POST EDITORIAL
This week, Ben Carson said that shortly after he gave a much-publicized speech criticizing ObamaCare at the National Prayer Breakfast, he found himself audited by the Internal Revenue Service. It makes him suspicious.
There was a day when we might have written off a claim like this. But given what we’ve learned about the IRS and its targeting of right-of-center organizations, the burden of proof has shifted.
Though the scandal is no longer making headlines, the questions about what was going on with IRS official Lois Lerner and her pals have never been answered. Meanwhile, the storyline fed keeps changing.
First we were told it was all the work of rogue agents in Cincinnati. Then it was that liberal groups were targeted, too. Then it was that no President Obama political appointees were involved. When a former IRS commissioner was asked what he was doing on his many visits to the White House, he sarcastically brought up Easter Egg rolls. Now we know that much of what we have been fed was either not true or misleading.
The point is that we still have no real idea what happened. Internal investigations have their own credibility problems. And when Lerner went before Congress, she invoked her Fifth Amendment rights.
In our system, the IRS works for the people and is accountable to the people through their elected representatives in Congress. The IRS has let Lerner retire in advance of a report that said she should be fired. Members of the House and Senate need to make whatever deal they need to get Lerner in front of their respective committees to testify, under oath — with a full understanding of the penalties if she lies or dissembles or misleads.