Deafening Silence on Obama IRS Scandal Developments

The nation’s top television news broadcasts - in both English and Spanish - have been entirely mum on the latest revelations related to alleged obstruction of justice and politically-directed abuse of power at the Obama administration’s Internal Revenue Service.

Whether at ABC, CBS and NBC, or Univision, Telemundo and Mundo Fox, these networks to date have essentially censored the admission by a U.S. Justice Department official –revealed by government watchdog group Judicial Watch – that allegedly lost e-mails of Obama IRS official Lois Lerner are in fact accessible, through the federal government’s computer back-up system.

As Judicial Watch’s Tom Fitton told Fox News, which has been the only major network to report on these developments, “there are no ‘missing’ Lois Lerner emails, nor missing emails of any of the other top IRS or other government officials…the Obama administration has known all along where the email records could be, but dishonestly withheld this information.”

Fitton said his group will continue to fight in court the Obama Justice Department’s allegation that “it would be too onerous” for the federal government to search its back-up, continuity-of-operations computer system for the missing emails.

As a result of ongoing U.S. District Court action, it also came to light this week that the IRS deliberately destroyed Lerner’s Blackberry after it knew her computer had crashed and after a congressional inquiry into her alleged abuse of power was underway. Referring to Lerner’s Blackberry in a sworn statement made public on Aug. 25, IRS Assistant Chief Counsel Thomas Kane indicated the IRS “removed or wiped clean of any sensitive or proprietary information and removed as scrap for disposal in June 2012.”


This is not the first time major national news media outlets have censored key details in the IRS scandal, since its first broke in May 2013. Other developments in recent months – such as Lois Lerner warning her colleagues about what they write in e-mails in case of government investigation, an IRS commissioner having donated in the past to Democratic candidates, and additional e-mails belonging to IRS employees being lost - have also all either been ignored or received scant coverage.

In fact, the flagship evening newscasts of Univision and Telemundo, the nation’s top two Spanish-language networks, have yet to devote a single second of airtime this year to covering the Obama IRS scandal.

Both of the above-referenced programs, however, along with CNN en Español’s En Directo USA and Noticias Mundo Fox, found plenty of time this week to include soft news features such as car buying tips (Telemundo), valuable comic books (CNN en Español) and the rescue of a dog stuck in a tire (Mundo Fox).

Ken Oliver-Méndez
Ken Oliver-Méndez
Ken Oliver-Méndez is Director of MRC Latino. He is an award-winning journalist and former White House Director of Specialty Media