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Federal Judge Threatens to Hold IRS Commish, DOJ Lawyers in Contempt of Court

There are two new developments in the ongoing IRS scandal that do not bode well for current IRS Commissioner John Koskinen.

Last week, House Republicans threatened to impeach him for “culpable misdemeanors,” and today District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan threatened to hold him, along with DOJ attorneys in contempt of court.

As I noted earlier this month, the IRS is skating on thin ice because Judge Sullivan is not a man to be trifled with.

Judicial Watch announced that U.S District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan today threatened to hold the Commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service and Justice Department attorneys in contempt of court after the IRS failed to produce status reports and newly recovered emails of Lois Lerner, former director of the Exempt Organizations Unit of the IRS, as he had ordered on July 1, 2015.

During the a status hearing today, Sullivan warned that the failure to follow his order was serious and the IRS and Justice Department’s excuses for not following his July 1 order were “indefensible, ridiculous, and absurd.”  He asked the IRS’ Justice Department lawyer Geoffrey Klimas, “Why didn’t the IRS comply” with his court order and “why shouldn’t the Court hold the Commissioner of the IRS in contempt.”  Judge Sullivan referenced his contempt findings against Justice Department prosecutors in the prosecution of late Senator Ted Stevens (R-AK) and reminded the Justice Department attorney he had the ability to detain him for contempt.  Warning he would tolerate no further disregard of his orders, Judge Sullivan said, “I will haul into court the IRS Commissioner to hold him personally into contempt.”

The former chairman of the powerful House Oversight and Reform Committee doesn't see Koskinen going anywhere without an intervention.

"He's not going anywhere because this president wants him just where he is - delaying, denying and complaining," said Rep. Darrell Issa, appearing on Neil Cavuto show Wednesday. "Remember, the president has now gone from admitting that there was targeting of conservatives, to pretending that it was a bad law that was passed before he was born - in the 1950s - that is at fault for the confusion as the president would like to have you believe it was."

He continued, "Lois Lerner,with malice and aforethought deliberately delayed and deterred a vast amount of conservative groups."

Responding to Cavuto's point that the Patriots' quarterback Tom Brady has been penalized more than Lois Lerner, Issa quipped that he'd like to see the commissioner at least get a four-game suspension.