'What Are They Hiding?': New Questions Raised About IRS Data Storage Contract
As the House gets set for another hearing on the missing Lois Lerner emails, new questions are being raised about a contract that the IRS had with an email storage firm.
House investigators have requested emails from 2009 to 2011, when the IRS division led by Lerner began targeting for extra scrutiny Tea Party and other conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status. The IRS has said the emails were lost in a computer crash, and the hard drive was then recycled.
The IRS had a contract with data storage firm Sonasoft in effect at least through 2009, according to the website FedSpending.org.
That same year, the company tweeted: “The IRS uses Sonasoft to back up their servers, why wouldn’t you choose them to protect your servers?”
But now a new report says the IRS canceled the contract just weeks after the computer crash is said to have taken place.
After a contentious grilling by Republicans on Friday, IRS Commissioner John Koskinen will face another round of questioning tonight before the House Oversight Committee.
Bill Hemmer discussed the new developments and the upcoming hearing with Cleta Mitchell, an attorney who represents dozens of Tea Party groups. Mitchell accused Koskinen of telling "preposterous tales" on Friday, arguing that Koskinen knows emails don't just disappear forever in the way the administration is claiming.
"Remember, he was the chairman of President Clinton's Y2K commission that was charged with making sure that the nation's computer systems didn't collapse," she noted, adding Koskinen didn't mention anything about Sonasoft in his testimony.
Hemmer made note of the timeline, saying Lerner's computer is said to have crashed 10 days after a letter from Congress about the targeting. Then two months later, in the summer of 2011, the contract was canceled.
"What are they hiding?" he asked.
Mitchell said that's what everyone is wondering right now, suggesting that these emails are the reason Lerner pleaded the Fifth last year.
"Perhaps she deliberately destroyed evidence that she knew would be incriminating from that all-important 2010-2011 time period. Here's what they're asking us to believe: that she just suddenly discovered that she had two years of emails missing. Don’t you think if that had been going on for two years, wouldn't you have noticed? I know I would have," said Mitchell.
Watch the full interview above, and tune in to Fox News, tonight at 7p ET for full coverage and analysis of the latest IRS hearing.