People who have been following the various scandals that accompanied the Obama administration may remember the operation involving Lois Lerner, in charge of the IRS division that handled applications for tax-exempt groups, which targeted Tea Party and conservative groups. When a group that Lerner and company considered opposition to the Obama administration applied for non-profit status, their applications were held up, and the groups were made to jump through hoops and were asked a great many intrusive questions as a way to entangle them in red tape.

Thus the Tea Party and conservative organizations were forced to spend resources fighting the IRS that they otherwise might have used to affect the outcome of the 2012 election. Lerner and her cohorts (to this day no one knows how high the matter went) had been spooked by the 2010 election and were keen not to see a repeat.

The Trump administration offers a mea culpa – and a lot of cash

Hot Air is reporting that the Trump administration has settled with the various groups and that the IRS has offered an official apology for what amounted to illegal acts that violated the constitutional rights of Americans based on their political views. The settlement involving a class action suit that included over 400 groups is said to be “generous.”

Lois Lerner still escapes prosecution

Unfortunately, Lois Lerner, the poster child of the targeting operation, will again avoid prosecution.

The Tea Party and conservative groups had been scrutinized during 2011 and 2012 on behest of Lerner, citing “political pressure” for a party or parties unknown at this time. When the revelations of IRS abuse came to light in 2013, Lerner resigned from her job. She took the fifth in front of a Congressional committee that had attempted to investigate the matter.

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In 2015, the Obama justice department declined to prosecute, a decision that was confirmed recently under the new administration, according to Fox News. Lerner is enjoying a generous government pension in her retirement.

The decision not to prosecute Lerner and the other bureaucrats who violated the civil rights of Americans has caused considerable disappointment among many Republicans.

Rep Kevin Brady, R=Texas, the chair of the House Ways and Means Committee that had initially investigated the matter and referred it to the Justice Department for criminal prosecution, called the decision, “terrible.” The idea that government officials can abuse American citizens for their political views and, in essence, get away with it suggests that a double standard is still in effect with one law for Washington and another for the rest of the country.