File this one in the “Can’t Make This Stuff Up” category. MSNBC actually speculated today that because the former IRS Commissioner was a Bush appointee that he may have been targeting Conservative and Tea Party groups because he was felt that they were unpopular and a threat to the GOP:
Is it possible that the right-leaning Tea Party was being forced to reconcile onerous information requests from the Internal Revenue Service because former IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman, who was appointed by PresidentGeorge W. Bush, thought the nascent conservative movement reflected poorly on the Republican Party? This is the theory that was posited on MSNBC on Monday in an effort to explain the IRS’ admission that they had singled out conservative groups for undue scrutiny.
“Is it really the interesting part here that Shulman, who was a Bush appointee, might have been looking at Tea Party groups because of what it might have done to the Republican Party at the time – in the future of what we’re seeing now; basically, splintering the foundation of the Republican side?” MSNBC anchor Thomas Roberts asked?
Allahpundit from Hot Air adds more:
The logic is ironclad and inexorable: Doug Shulman, appointed IRS commissioner by Bush in March 2008, was so fiercely loyal to his Beltway Republican masters that he decided to risk his career to kneecap conservative insurgents’ nonprofits in 2010 … even though Bush had left office more than a year before and the GOP establishment he represented was widely loathed by pretty much everyone in America. Oh, and even though (again per Rothman) Shulman himself has donated to the DNC in the past. Say it with me, guys: This. Is. A. Republican. Scandal.
In the same spirit of half-assed spitballing/“news,” how’s this for an alternate theory: Shulman tacitly approved of the tea-party targeting because he was eager to prove himself a loyal soldier to a new Democratic administration that might have been suspicious of his Bush pedigree. After hearing tea partiers impugned a thousand timesby Dem officials and liberal media outlets — none more so than MSNBC — maybe he got it in his head that singling out these right-wing would-be domestic terrorists was the patriotic (and career-furthering) thing to do. Slightly more plausible, yes? As theories go, I’d say it’s 51-percent-assed. Soon we’ll get to hear Shulman’s side of it when he’s inevitably subpoenaed by Darrell Issa’s committee. And, almost as inevitably, his testimony won’t be carried live by MSNBC.
I guess what MSNBC is saying is that, in sort of a round-a-bout way, it’s Bush’s fault that the IRS targeted Conservative groups.