Conservatives Are Digging Very, Very Deep to Keep IRS “Scandal” Alive

Fight disinformation. Get a daily recap of the facts that matter. Sign up for the free Mother Jones newsletter.


Conservative desperation to revive the IRS “scandal,” which basically imploded in their laps weeks ago, continues apace. Steve Benen reports today that the latest is a scoop by the Daily Caller about a White House meeting with IRS chief counsel William Wilkins in 2012. The fact that this was trumpeted in the Caller is pretty much all you need to know about this supposedly nefarious meeting, but click the link if you want the (extremely boring) details of what really went on.

For sheer entertainment value, though, a friend passes along the fun and games on Fox last night:

So Greta Van Susteren has on an unfortunate Virginia organic farmer — not coincidentally, I’m sure, an attractive young blonde — who says she was audited by the IRS because of her affiliation with the Tea Party!

Under mild questioning, she admits that most of her apparently many disputes are in fact with the county government. Despite the headline and her flat assertion, she provided zero testimony or explanation for how her IRS problem might have anything to do with the Tea Party.

Never mind. One of her many accusations of outrageous government harassment is that the county fined her for having a birthday party for eight little girls on her farm! Oh, the horror! How could such a thing possibly be?

A birthday party! Tyranny has run amok. However, what millions of Fox watchers will never learn is that her dispute is actually over her refusal to pay for a $150 permit if she wants to use her farm for commerical activities (hosting events, selling other people’s craft items) that it’s not zoned for (i.e., growing and selling food). The county also wants to make sure that she has parking and bathrooms on the site. That’s it. But it doesn’t matter. Another urban legend on the right has been born, and it will now live forever.

HERE ARE THE FACTS:

Our fall fundraising drive is off to a rough start, and we very much need to raise $250,000 in the next couple of weeks. If you value the journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us do it with a donation today.

As we wrote over the summer, traffic has been down at Mother Jones and a lot of sites with many people thinking news is less important now that Donald Trump is no longer president. But if you're reading this, you're not one of those people, and we're hoping we can rally support from folks like you who really get why our reporting matters right now. And that's how it's always worked: For 45 years now, a relatively small group of readers (compared to everyone we reach) who pitch in from time to time has allowed Mother Jones to do the type of journalism the moment demands and keep it free for everyone else.

Please pitch in with a donation during our fall fundraising drive if you can. We can't afford to come up short, and there's still a long way to go by November 5.

payment methods

ONE MORE QUICK THING:

Our fall fundraising drive is off to a rough start, and we very much need to raise $250,000 in the next couple of weeks. If you value the journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us do it with a donation today.

As we wrote over the summer, traffic has been down at Mother Jones and a lot of sites with many people thinking news is less important now that Donald Trump is no longer president. But if you're reading this, you're not one of those people, and we're hoping we can rally support from folks like you who really get why our reporting matters right now. And that's how it's always worked: For 45 years now, a relatively small group of readers (compared to everyone we reach) who pitch in from time to time has allowed Mother Jones to do the type of journalism the moment demands and keep it free for everyone else.

Please pitch in with a donation during our fall fundraising drive if you can. We can't afford to come up short, and there's still a long way to go by November 5.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate