Fox News Sunday

Disgraced ex-IRS official will not get immunity in exchange for testimony

When disgraced IRS official Lois Lerner appears before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on Wednesday, she will not receive immunity for any testimony she gives, according to Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA):

“Her attorney indicates now that she will testify. We’ve had a back and forth negotiation,” Issa told Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday. “But quite frankly, we believe that evidence that we’ve gathered causes her in her best interest to be summoned to testify.”

The evidence that Issa, who chairs the House Oversight Committee, has obtained are emails showing that Lerner drafted the proposed IRS regulations that would restrict political speech of nonprofit groups that engage in public policy discussions. The regulations are currently being considered by the IRS.

Wallace asked whether the House Oversight Committee offered Lerner immunity in exchange for her testimony. “We did not,” Issa replied, adding later that he believes the disgraced IRS official will answer all the committee’s questions about the powerful tax agencies targeting of conservative groups.

What does Bachmann’s candidacy mean for the GOP?

As you know doubt know by now, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) officially announced her bid for the Republican nomination for president yesterday in Waterloo, Iowa, which is her hometown (although wasn’t a big secret that she was running):

Republican Michele Bachmann is casting herself as the “bold choice” in the 2012 presidential race.

The outspoken congresswoman and tea party favorite formally launched her bid Monday in her Iowa birthplace, Waterloo, after first making her intentions clear at a debate earlier this month.

Outside a historic mansion, Bachmann said she’s waging the campaign “not for vanity.” Instead she says voters “must make a bold choice if we are to secure the promise of the future.”

Bachmann enters the race as an Iowa poll shows her near the front of the pack in the first in the nation caucus state.

“I am a descendant of generations of Iowans and I know what it means to be from Iowa. I know what we value here and I know what’s important,” said Bachmann.

Bachmann played up her tea party ties but also made mention of her Democratic roots. Bachmann said she grew up a Democrat, but changed parties after working for Jimmy Carter in 1976. She didn’t like his spending policies.

She now counts herself as a tea-party candidate, which she said is made up of Republicans but also fed up Democrats and independents.”It’s a very powerful coalition that the left fears, and they should because make no mistake about it Barrack Obama will be a one-term president,” said Bachmann.

Herman Cain Plays The Race Card

Remember the 2008 campaign (and afterward) when several of Obama’s opponents were called racist for criticizing him? Remember the conservative backlash against liberals playing the race card? Fast forward to the 2012 campaign and we are once again seeing the same filthy, immature racialism. Only this time it’s coming from a conservative – tea party darling Herman Cain.

I came across this story from ThinkProgress and was immediately skeptical as I am a frequent viewer of The Daily Show and consider myself to be a huge fan of Jon Stewart. I have never once even considered that Jon Stewart harbors any sense of racism. However, keeping an open mind and not wanting to cast a hasty judgement, I decided to hunt down the clip of Stewart’s show in question to see just what it was that Herman Cain was referencing. Perhaps Stewart has said something that Cain merely took out of context. To my surprise, the segment was from a show which I had already seen. The issue of race did not so much as pass through my mind upon my initial viewing that episode, and I did not detect the slightest hint of it the second time.

Here’s what Herman Cain had to say:

Bob Woodward on IRS scandal: “There’s obviously something here”

Bob Woodward

In a panel discussion on Fox News Sunday, Bob Woodward, one of the journalists who uncovered the Watergate scandal, said that there is “obviously something” to the Internal Revenue Service’s target of conservative groups and that President Barack Obama should take a strong stand rather than dismiss the scandal.

Though Woodward questioned whether some members of the House Ways and Means Committee should be making public declarations that former IRS official Lois Lerner has committed a crime, he declared that “[t]here’s obviously something here.”

“[Y]ou know, we should dig into it. There should be answers. It’s quite correct,” Woodward told host Chris Wallace. “And for the President to take that position is very, very unusual, and say there’s ‘not a smidgen’ of evidence here.”

The House Ways and Means Committee referred Lerner to the Justice Department last week for criminal prosecution, alleging that the disgraced official “impeded official investigations by providing misleading statements in response to questions from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration” and may have leaked confidential taxpayer information.

Yes, the Obama administration is cooking the books to boost Obamacare

In a segment on Fox News Sunday, Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) dismissed the claim that 6 million people have enrolled into health plans and accused the Obama administration of “cooking the books” to boost Obamacare enrollment numbers.

This all goes back to the Obama administration being unable to produce the number of paid enrollments. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney acknowledged this last month, pointing to “major insurers who have placed [the number of paid enrollments] at 80%, give or take.” This estimate was repeated on Sunday by insurance industry consultant Robert Laszewski.

“Of course, the more than 6 million enrollment the administration recently announced overstates Obamacare’s success because this includes enrollments that were never completed since the person never paid the premium,” wrote Laszewski, president of Health Policy and Strategy Associates. “There are lots of reasons why a consumer might not complete the enrollment,” citing enrollment errors or second thoughts.

Rand Paul talks CPAC straw poll win, young people on Fox News Sunday

Rand Paul on Fox News Sunday

Fresh off a successful weekend at Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) joined Fox News Sunday to talk about his straw poll victory and young voters’ disenfranchisement with President Barack Obama.

“[T]he one thing about CPAC it’s just chock full of young people,” Paul told host Chris Wallace. “There are young people everywhere, and I think young people, their lives sort of rotate, and, you know, disseminate.”

“Everything goes out through their cell phone and they are very aware of their privacy,” he continued, “and they don’t think when the government tells them that the Fourth Amendment doesn’t protect your cell phone, doesn’t protect your records, they don’t accept that, so I think not only conservative young people from colleges and high school, I think young people across the country are fed up with the government that says, ‘Hey, the Fourth Amendment doesn’t apply to your records, doesn’t apply to your cell phone.’”

Rand Paul on domestic surveillance: Strengthen the Fourth Amendment

Rand Paul

The solution to the National Security Agency’s broad domestic surveillance apparatus, according to Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), is to pass legislation applies Fourth Amendment protections to third-party records.

“I would like to apply the Fourth Amendment to third-party records,” said Paul, referring to the NSA’s bulk data collection programs, which includes obtaining records of Americans’ phone calls. “I don’t think you give up your privacy when someone else holds your records. So, when I have a contract with a phone company, I think those are still my records. And you can look at them if you’re from the government if you ask a judge.”

The comments came during an appearance on Fox News Sunday. Paul also disputed the legality of what the NSA is doing, arbitrarily collecting these records, even if they don’t in anyway relate to actual investigations into terrorist activity. He also said that the Supreme Court needs to take a look at the issue of privacy.

Huntsman wrongly criticizes Paul unemployment benefits comments

Congress will soon weigh whether or not to extend benefits for unemployed Americans for another year, at a cost of $26 billion. Though the country has seen growth and job creation has picked up the pace, many Americans haven’t been able to find work in what is still a slow-moving economy.

During an appearance on Fox News Sunday, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) questioned the wisdom of extending unemployment benefits past the normal six-month period.

“When you allow people to be on unemployment insurance for 99 weeks, you’re causing them to become part of this perpetual unemployed group in our economy,” Paul, a potential Republican presidential candidate, told host Chris Wallace. “And it really — while it seems good, it actually does a disservice to the people you’re trying to help.”

Jon Huntsman, for Governor of Utah and Ambassador to China, criticized Paul on the issue on Monday. “This is language that’s suitable for the Republican primary, plain and simple,” he said on MSNBC’s Morning Joe, according to Politico. “This isn’t the language that’s good for all Americans and that gets us closer to solving the problem,” emphasizing the need for bipartisan solutions.

Huntsman, a failed Republican presidential candidate in 2012 who has made rumblings about 2016, may not like the “language,” but he didn’t do anything to prove Paul’s underlying point wrong. Why? Because he can’t.

Cruz, Lee discuss defunding ObamaCare on Sunday shows

Ted Cruz on Fox News Sunday

There will be a showdown in the Senate this week on the Continuing Resolution (CR) and ObamaCare funding, that much was made clear by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) yesterday during his appearance on Fox News Sunday.

Last week, Cruz hinted that he would filibuster any CR that didn’t defund ObamaCare. But Cruz told Chris Wallace, host of Fox News Sunday, that he may attempt to block the motion to proceed on the House version of the CR if Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) plans to use a simple majority to strip out language that would defund ObamaCare.

“The first order of business is going to be to ask Harry Reid if he will agree to allow amendments to be subject to a 60-vote threshold — and that’s typical in the Senate; we have a lot of amendments that are subject to 60-vote thresholds,” Cruz told Wallace.

“Now, in all likelihood he will say no because he wants to use brute political power to force Obamacare funding through with just Democrats, exactly the same way he passed the bill three years ago,” said Cruz. “Now, if he does that, then Senate Republicans have the tool that we always use when the majority leader is abusing his power, which is we can deny cloture. We can filibuster and say we will not allow you to add the funding back for Obamacare with just 51 votes.”

Justin Amash appears on Fox News Sunday, slams NSA surveillance

The distinctions between a government that adheres to constitutional limitations and a government that runs roughshod over the Bill of Rights were heard yesterday on Fox News Sunday.

General Michael Hayden, former director of the NSA and the CIA, defended the programs being employed to surveil Americans accused of no crime and said that efforts to limit them would put the country at risk. He also proclaimed that there is no expectation of privacy when it comes to third-party records, including phone records collected by the NSA.

But Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) disputed this notion, explaining that the Founding Fathers put the Fourth Amendment to protect Americans from an overreaching government.

“[I]t’s precisely because we live in this dangerous world that we need protections like the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution,” Amash told Chis Wallace, host of Fox News Sunday. “The Framers of the Constitution put it in place precisely because they were worried that you would have national security justifications for violating people’s rights.”

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