March 23, 2019

Issa: Cummings is an ‘Obstacle to Congressional Oversight’ in Obama IRS Probe

Cummings-IssaDemocrat Rep. Elijah Cummings is the second highest-ranking member on the House Oversight Committee. The mission statement of the committee reads as follows:

We exist to secure two fundamental principles. First, Americans have a right to know that the money Washington takes from them is well spent. And second, Americans deserve an efficient, effective government that works for them. Our duty on the Oversight and Government Reform Committee is to protect these rights.

Our solemn responsibility is to hold government accountable to taxpayers, because taxpayers have a right to know what they get from their government. We will work tirelessly, in partnership with citizen-watchdogs, to deliver the facts to the American people and bring genuine reform to the federal bureaucracy.

Given the very specific mission of holding government accountable to the taxpayers and ‘working in partnership’ with citizen-watchdogs to deliver the facts to the American people, one is lead to wonder if Cummings is using his leadership role in the committee to obstruct justice. Rather than seek truth and answers, it seems as though Cummings has attempted at every turn to protect the Democrat party and President Barack Obama from any downfall related to facts discovered in the case of the IRS targeting of conservative and Tea Party groups.

In February 2014 , reported that “Russell George, the Treasury Inspector General who authored the scathing report that outlined the campaign of harassment” was under intense attack by Cummings. George was one of the few officials who were forthright in his answers during questioning before the committee. For his cooperation in seeking answers and holding government accountable, he was accused by Cummings of misconduct for agreeing to meet with the GOP without a Democrat in attendance.

The Hill reported at that time on a formal complaint lodged against George.

Two Democratic members of that panel — Reps. Matt Cartwright (Pa.) and Connolly — lodged a complaint on Wednesday about George’s original report on the IRS targeting last year, questioning his “independence, ethics, competence, and quality control” with an oversight board for inspectors general.

“If you want to connect the dots, a reasonable observer could be expected to conclude that he colluded with Issa’s staff to limit his report and the path of his investigation,” Connolly told The Hill concerning George. 

On March 5, 2014, reported on the hissy fit thrown by Cummings for apparent political theater as well as the history that Rep. Cummings has had with obstruction of justice.

Obama’s time in the White House has been plagued with numerous scandals. From Fast and Furious to the use of the IRS as a weapon to target those seen as enemies to Obama’s agenda to ‘fundamentally transform America’, Cummings has been there to defend and protect Obama, not search for answers. In fact, his protectionist actions are so blatant, that even Democrats have named him as ‘Obama’s biggest defender’. In August 2013, Yahoo News reported on an Op-Ed written by Democrat strategist Robert Weiner, former White House spokesperson and senior staff for three House committees, and Nakia Gladden, a policy and research analyst, in which they discussed Cummings’ emergence as Obama’s biggest defender against Committee Chairman Darrell Issa’s search for truth regarding Obama’s overreach and scandals, which Cummings believes to be phony. 

Weiner and Gladden praised Cummings efforts to block the quest for truth by stating, “Without the leadership role that Cummings as Ranking Member is exhibiting, there would be no counter to Issa’s public relations exploitation.  What Cummings has exposed is that the real scandal is Issa’s waste and abuse of his power.” Perhaps they need to review the role of the committee in seeking answers, not covering for corruption. 

Cummings doesn’t want answers. He wants to assist Obama in his fundamental transformation of America. With Fast and Furious, Cummings distorted the reality of the Obama/Holder gun running scandal by erroneously claiming that it actually began during the Bush administration and, even worse, rather than demanding answers, instead demanded gun control in response to Fast and Furious.

Cummings used his power and influence in following the lead of the IRS in bullying, harassing, and intimidating Tea Party groups by doing the same thing to one specific group. In October 2012, Breitbart reported that Texas based True the Vote, headed by Catherine Engelbrecht, was being targeted directly by Elijah Cummings.

Following the outburst and political theater display by Cummings in which he attempted to continue a hearing that had been adjourned, the Democrat party and the typical race-baiter Jesse Jackson accused Issa of racism.  That is the typical Democrat go-to line when they want to shut someone down and shut that person or group up.

On March 7th, reported on Issa’s response to said accusations on The Kelly File on FOX News.

Issa responded to charges of racism by Jesse Jackson and others as “sad,” and said that the reason Cummings received his committee appointment was because he promised to stifle Issa’s investigations into Obama’s numerous scandals.

Issa went on to say that he simply followed committee rules adding Cummings knew that the hearing was a continuation of a previous hearing. Therefore, Cummings would not be allowed to make a statement.

On Friday, FOX News reported on a letter it obtained from Issa in which he addressed the numerous the rationale laid out by Cummings and his legal experts as to why Lois Lerner, the now retired IRS official at the center of the investigation into the harassment and targeting of conservative and Tea Party groups, could not be held in contempt of court. Rep. Issa did not hold back.

In it, Issa countered, point by point, a series of claims that Cummings and two legal experts made earlier this week about whether former IRS official Lois Lerner could be held in contempt for refusing to testify. 

Issa went further, effectively accusing Cummings of running interference on behalf of his party and the administration. 

“… rather than pursuing the facts where they lead — which is the function of effective congressional oversight — you have made yourself an obstacle  to effective congressional oversight, in effect, a defense counsel for Lerner and others who acted to deprive Americans of their constitutionally-guaranteed rights,” the committee chairman wrote. 

In another verbal sting, he continued: “Even though the White House helped orchestrate your ascension to Ranking Member, I have encouraged, and continue to encourage, you to subordinate your political loyalties to the institutional interests of the Committee and the House, especially in cases like this where obstructing the Committee’s work risks permanently disadvantaging Congress in its interactions with the Executive Branch.” 

Read the full report on the latest exchange in this feud between Issa and Cummings on FOX News.


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