News & Politics

Gowdy: 'The Calendar's Not in Our Favor' on Impeaching IRS Chief

(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) admitted Tuesday evening that the calendar is not in the GOP’s favor in regards to the impeachment of IRS Commissioner John Koskinen.

The congressman appeared on Fox News’ “On the Record” with Greta Van Susteren to discuss the House Judiciary hearing examining allegations of misconduct against the IRS chief.

Gowdy said that the misconduct involved the agency’s failure to comply with a subpoena and failure to preserve evidence, and noted that the IRS had not offered a consistent explanation for the failures, having put forward about eight different iterations of its defense.

During the hearing Tuesday morning, Gowdy elaborated on the IRS’s evolving defenses, each of which, he noted, eventually collapsed. “It began with the two people in Ohio that were blamed, then it went to my favorite defense, which is that the IRS is too incompetent to construct a scheme as sophisticated as this scheme was, and then they moved from that to ‘yeah, but we also targeted progressives too, so we were equal in our discrimination,’ and then the one they settled on towards the end, was, ‘yeah, but the president himself did not personally approve this targeting scheme, therefore, you don’t have to look at it, anymore.'”

“Usually if there have been eight defenses, you’re going to call him an inmate at some point,” Gowdy quipped to Van Susteren.

He noted that one of their defenses has been incompetence. “And ironically, in theory you could actually be impeached for gross incompetence — malfeasance in office — so I don’t know how incompetence is a defense against an allegation of incompetence.”

Asked by Van Susteren whether he thinks that Koskinen will likely be impeached, Gowdy admitted, “I don’t think so. I don’t think the calendar’s in our favor, but he really ought to consider leaving. When Congress has lost confidence in you, it’s probably best that you go on.”

Watch the video on the next page.