Politics
FILE - This March 22, 2013, file photo, shows the exterior of the Internal Revenue Service building in Washington. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

IRS union denies ‘smoking gun’ meeting with Obama

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Caroline May
Political Reporter

The National Treasury Employees Union is denying claims that the union’s president was in contact with President Obama shortly before Internal Revenue Service employees began targeting conservative groups.

In a statement emailed to The Daily Caller, the NTEU explained just what NTEU president Colleen Kelley was doing at the White House on March 31, 2010 — shortly before the IRS Determinations Unit began targeting tea party groups.

“On March 31, 2010, NTEU president Colleen M. Kelley attended the White House Forum on Workplace Flexibility at the Old Executive Office Building,” an NTEU spokesperson wrote in an email. “The forum was attended by approximately 200 attendees including business leaders, workers, policy experts and labor representatives discussing telework and worklife balance issues. Attendees were broken into five groups to discuss workplace issues.”

“The president made opening remarks,” the spokesperson continued. “President Kelley did not have any direct contact with the president or the first lady.”

Monday, The American Spectator raised the possibility that Kelley’s March 31, 2010 visit could represent a “smoking gun” to conclude that the White House had more involvement in the tea party targeting than originally reported.

“In short: the very day after the president of the quite publicly anti-Tea Party labor union — the union for IRS employees — met with President Obama, the manager of the IRS ‘Determinations Unit Program agreed’ to open a ‘Sensitive Case report on the Tea party cases.’ As stated by the IG report,” The American Spectator’s Jeffrey Lord wrote, highlighting the fact that the unions PAC endorsed Obama in 2008 and 2012 and donated to so-called “anti-Tea Party candidates” in the 2010 and 2012 election cycles.

The NTEU spokesperson further directed TheDC to a description of the March 31, 2010 event.

“On March 31, 2010, President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama and the White House Council on Women and Girls hosted the White House Forum on Workplace Flexibility,” the description reads. “The Forum brought together small business owners, corporate leaders, workers, policy experts, and labor leaders to explore the importance of creating workplace practices that allow America’s working men and women to meet the demands of their jobs without sacrificing the needs of their families. Building on the momentum coming out of that forum, the Administration is hosting follow-up forums around the country and encourages others to convene events in their communities to engage in dialogue and take action on this important issue.”

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