Say what you will about the Obama administration, but you’ve got to admit, they know how to play hardball and they are shameless.  Not qualities necessarily to be admired, but effective, nonetheless.

Kimberly Strassel’s WSJ piece, “IRS Targeting:  Round Two,”  explains the Obama administration’s latest shenanigans against the tea party.  It turns out the Administration’s feigned outrage over IRS targeting of tea parties may just have been a reaction to Phase One of a two phase plan to keep tea parties from engaging in educational efforts connected to elections.

Quietly, over the Thanksgiving holiday, the Obama administration issued a proposed guidance for social welfare organizations seeking 501(c)(4) status.  IRS Acting Commissioner Danny Werfel explains the purpose of the proposal in the IRS’s press release of November 26th,

“This is part of ongoing efforts within the IRS that are improving our work in the tax-exempt area.  Once final, this proposed guidance will continue moving us forward and provide clarity for this important segment of exempt organizations.”

Got to love the IRS’ willingness to constantly improve and streamline their “services.”

Strassel has her doubts, though, about the IRS’ intentions suggesting that perhaps the Obama administration is taking IRS targeting to the next level, that is backing it up with the force of law.  Strassel explains,

“That this rule was meant to crack down on the White House’s political opponents was never in doubt. What is new is the growing concern by House Ways and Means Committee investigators that the regulation was reverse-engineered—designed to isolate and shut down the same tea party groups victimized in the first targeting round. Treasury appears to have combed through those tea party applications, compiled all the groups’ main activities, and then restricted those activities in the new rule.” (Emphasis added.)

House Ways & Means Chairman Dave Camp is quoted as follows,

“The committee has reviewed thousands of tax exempt applications.  The new regulation so closely mirrors the abused tea-party group applications, it leads me to question if this new proposed regulation is simply another form of targeting.”

Ever feel like you are watching reruns of Batman & Robin when reading about the Obama administration’s hijinks?  “Riddle me this, Batman.  How do you turn a scandal into a political coup?  Use a little jurisprudence.”

Strassel explains the proposed guidance reclassifies many of the activities which tea parties engage in as “political activity”:  voter guides, candidate nights, voter registration.

Tea parties view this activity as educational and a means to encourage more Americans to get involved in their government.  And the Obama administration seems to want to promote this activity too – at least for some groups.  As if to add insult to injury, Strassel notes that 501(c)(3)’s such as the League of Women’s Voters and 501(c)(5)‘s, labor unions, will not be subject to the new regulation.

The IRS is seeking public comment on their proposed guidance for 501(c)(4)’s as well as comment on what portion of a group’s activity must be dedicated to social welfare to be considered tax-exempt.

Ohio liberty groups need to speak out on the IRS’ duplicity.  Call your Congressman and let them know that the IRS’s new guidance takes the unlawful – the targeting of citizens with the full force and effect of the U.S. Government – and makes it law all in time for the 2014 election.

Unfortunately, there are no caped-crusaders looking out for the little guy in Obama’s America.  We can’t get our Congressmen to put on capes and wear masks, but perhaps we can encourage them to have a little backbone and protect us from the sinister forces at work in our own government.

Read Kimberly Strassel’s full article here.