Two Republican lawmakers are challenging America to a very expensive scavenger hunt.
Texas representatives Bill Flores and Louie Gohmert introduced a bill Wednesday that would “provide monetary awards to any individual who provides information pertaining to the electronic communications sent by Lois Lerner during her employment at the Internal Revenue Service.”
The legislation, called the Identify and Recover Sent E-mails Act, would offer a whopping $1 million to any individual or group that recovers the e-mails that were allegedly lost when Lois Lerner’s hard drive crashed.
Additionally, the Texas lawmakers propose that salaries of those working for the IRS be cut by 20% until Lerner’s messages are successfully recovered. The legislation would also introduce a reward of $500,000 for information that would prompt a criminal prosecution over the lost e-mails. The money for the rewards would come from the IRS fiscal year 2014 budget.
“Lois Lerner’s involvement in the planning and execution of beliefs-based IRS targeting can only stay hidden for so long. By providing these incentives we can get people to reveal the hidden truths behind this egregious cover up,” said Flores in a statement. “It is time to hold the IRS’ feet to the fire and for them to come clean about Lois Lerner’s involvement.”
Congressman Gohmert added, “It seems that each time the IRS has evidence that will either prove with certainty its guilt or innocence, the evidence disappears which both common sense and the law indicate the evidence such as emails must have proved the IRS’s impropriety if not outright crimes. It is time the IRS either comes clean, or has a special prosecutor to clean it up. This bill should help in the interim.”
Congressional investigators have already found evidence of the IRS’ targeting of conservatives in e-mail exchanges of Lerner’s that weren’t destroyed, so undoubtedly the missing messages would shed more light on the issue should they be unearthed by someone wanting to make an extra million bucks.
Perhaps someone at Sonasoft, the company that the IRS once contracted to catalog e-mails, will come forward with the evidence. After all, the organization was still paying Sonasoft to perform “automatic data processing” during the time period Lerner’s lost e-mails were sent.
One thing is for certain: the American people don’t trust the IRS’ story about the hard drive crash, and they want to know the truth behind the matter.