Good morning, here are Monday’s political law links, 5/20/13

TICK TOCK DRIP. The Post. “The firestorm buffeting the Internal Revenue Service intensified Friday as lawmakers began what they promised would be an extensive effort to learn whether there was any political motivation or White House involvement in the agency’s recently acknowledged misdeeds.”

CINCINNATI CONFUSED. The Times. “While there are still many gaps in the story of how the I.R.S. scandal happened, interviews with current and former employees and with lawyers who dealt with them, along with a review of I.R.S. documents, paint a more muddled picture of an understaffed Cincinnati outpost that was alienated from the broader I.R.S. culture and given little direction.”

SHAKE UP IRS. Post. “Among the many investigations getting started, the Justice Department is beginning a criminal probe. More important than criminal convictions, however, is that investigators in the Obama administration and in Congress get answers, that the IRS sees genuine reform, and that those who betrayed the public trust — willingly or not — are removed from positions in which they could repeat their errors.”

CAMPAIGN FINANCE: IT’S COMPLICATED. The Post. “How certain groups qualify for tax-exempt status as a 501(c)(4) organization — a distinction that allows them to keep both their donors and donations secret — is the focus of the week (thanks to the buffoonery, at best, of some IRS officials) but it opens up (or should open up) a conversation about the vagaries of campaign finance law.”

SEC AND DISCLOSURE. The Post. “House Republicans repeatedly warned the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday against dragging the agency into a political fray, evoking the scandal at the IRS over the targeting of conservative groups.”

IL: RAHM REFUND. News here. “Mayor Rahm Emanuel has returned a $10,000 campaign donation from a lobbyist for a tech firm disqualified from a city program this week after the Tribune raised questions about potential violations of the mayor’s self-imposed limits on political fundraising, an Emanuel spokeswoman confirmed Thursday.”

NJ: BOOKER FEES. “Mayor Cory Booker made $1.3 million on the speaking circuit between 2008 and 2013 and gave roughly $620,000 of it to charity, according to documents and disclosures he released yesterday.”

VA: GIFT ISSUES IN VA. The Times. “While not on a par with Washington scandals unfolding around the I.R.S. and other agencies, which are commanding national and presidential attention, Virginia’s homegrown drama, now in its seventh week, has more outsize characters and soap opera turns.”

VA: LOOSE RULES. Story here. ”The commonwealth is one of 10 states that places no cap on the size of personal gifts that officeholders can accept. Many, including Maryland and the District, prohibit elected officials from accepting any gift from a company with business before the government.”


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