Last week, we learned that the Jewish group known as Z Street had its tax exempt status application held up because it was “connected to Israel”. Last night, Lori Lowenthal Marcus, Z Street’s representative Lori Lowenthal Marcus appeared with Greta van Susteren and said that not only is the group’s 2009 filing still not approved but that the reason given for the delay had to do with terrorism taking place in Israel.
Of course, that explanation left out one important point. While there might be terrorism taking place in Israel, it’s coming from Muslim groups like Hamas.
Z Street has filed a ‘viewpoint discrimination’ lawsuit against the former head of the IRS but perhaps that argument is bolstered when Z Street’s treatment is contrasted with the treatment of the Barack H. Obama Foundation, which was founded by the president’s half-brother and named after their father.
Via the Daily Caller:
Lois Lerner, the senior IRS official at the center of the decision to target tea party groups for burdensome tax scrutiny, signed paperwork granting tax-exempt status to the Barack H. Obama Foundation, a shady charity headed by the president’s half-brother that operated illegally for years.
According to the organization’s filings, Lerner approved the foundation’s tax status within a month of filing, an unprecedented timeline that stands in stark contrast to conservative organizations that have been waiting for more than three years, in some cases, for approval.
Lerner also appears to have broken with the norms of tax-exemption approval by granting retroactive tax-exempt status to Malik Obama’s organization.
The National Legal and Policy Center filed an official complaint with the IRS in May 2011 asking why the foundation was being allowed to solicit tax-deductible contributions when it had not even applied for an IRS determination. In a New York Post article dated May 8, 2011, an officer of the foundation admitted, “We haven’t been able to find someone with the expertise” to apply for tax-exempt status.
Nevertheless, a month later, the Barack H. Obama Foundation had flown through the grueling application process. Lerner granted the organization a 501(c) determination and even gave it a retroactive tax exemption dating back to December 2008.
The group’s available paperwork suggests an extremely hurried application and approval process. For example, the group’s 990 filings for 2008 and 2009 were submitted to the IRS on May 30, 2011, and its 2010 filing was submitted on May 23, 2011.
Yes, Malik Obama is a Muslim. This would seem relevant when his foundation’s tax exempt status received unheard of expedition and beneficial treatment while the Jewish Z Street has been intentionally delayed, apparently for prejudicial reasons.