Retri­bu­tion by Obama of­fi­cials keeps coura­geous con­gress­man in prison

The Washington Times Weekly - - Commentary -

For­mer Rep. Steve Stock­man, Texas Repub­li­can, did more as an elected of­fi­cial than per­haps any other to alert the na­tion to the fact that Lois Lerner, the now-dis­graced IRS of­fi­cial, was us­ing her pow­er­ful po­si­tion to tar­get con­ser­va­tives.

He boldly led the charge that even­tu­ally re­sulted in Ms. Lerner ad­mit­ting her abuse of power, be­ing held in con­tempt of Congress and be­ing ousted her from her post.

But while Ms. Lerner now lives as a free woman, even though she and her crooked govern­ment bud­dies en­acted re­venge on Stock­man, who now is lan­guish­ing in a fed­eral prison un­der a 10-year sen­tence.

The 2018 crim­i­nal trial of Stock­man has laid bare the un­der­belly of po­lit­i­cal tar­get­ing by the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion’s Depart­ment of Jus­tice. As a con­gress­man, Stock­man had ex­posed many in­stances of high-level cor­rup­tion by Obama of­fi­cials. His abil­ity to chase down and hold ac­count­able Obama of­fi­cials is leg­endary. Stock­man called for the im­peach­ment of At­tor­ney Gen­eral Eric H. Holder for ob­struc­tion of jus­tice and con­tempt of Congress.

The gutsy for­mer Texas con­gress­man un­did much of Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s agenda when he blocked, via a “blue slip,” the pres­i­dent’s sig­na­ture leg­isla­tive pri­or­i­ties — the immigratio­n and gun con­trol bills — ef­fec­tively keep­ing the Se­nate from send­ing the bills to the House for a vote.

Stock­man also in­tro­duced a bill call­ing for U.S. Capi­tol Po­lice to ar­rest Ms. Lerner for de­stroy­ing govern­ment emails and for ob­struc­tion of jus­tice.

DOJ of­fi­cial Ray­mond Hulser, who signed the in­dict­ment of Stock­man in the spring of 2017, was copied by Ms. Lerner on emails to DOJ giv­ing ev­i­dence of her scheme to pros­e­cute con­ser­va­tives.

The case against Steve Stock­man? It in­volves the sup­posed trick­ing of non­profit donors, based on four checks and two donors. It took twice as long as the Trump in­ves­ti­ga­tion, four grand ju­ries, the pres­sur­ing of wit­nesses and mil­lions of dol­lars to con­vict the for­mer leg­is­la­tor.

Poignantly, nei­ther of the donors com­plained or con­tacted the govern­ment; rather, the DOJ sought them out. The govern­ment’s own key FBI wit­ness, Ben Wet­more, called it a “show trial — a real-life, Soviet-style pros­e­cu­tion.”

An FBI wit­ness tes­ti­fied at Stock­man’s trial that an agent was brought onto the FBI team to in­ves­ti­gate the con­gress­man the same month

Stock­man ap­peared on Fox News call­ing for Ms. Lerner’s ar­rest.

The govern­ment or­ga­ni­za­tions and peo­ple on whom Stock­man blew the whis­tle are the very ones who tried and se­cured his con­vic­tion — the FBI, DOJ and IRS.

So dis­turb­ing was the pros­e­cu­tion of the con­gress­man that dozens of high­pro­file con­ser­va­tives are ring­ing the bell in a “friend of the court,” or am­i­cus, brief filed last week in Stock­man’s case. (I am proud to have signed onto the brief.) The pre­vi­ous am­i­cus brief filed in early June and the new one pend­ing be­fore the U.S. Court of Ap­peals for the 5th Cir­cuit, where Stock­man’s case now re­sides, lay out a shock­ing scheme to si­lence Stock­man and keep him locked up.

Mark Fitzgib­bons, a fundrais­ing law ex­pert at po­lit­i­cal direct mail pi­o­neer Richard Viguerie’s Amer­i­can Tar­get Ad­ver­tis­ing agency, who wrote the am­i­cus brief for Stock­man’s ap­peal, said “the Govern­ment’s pros­e­cu­tion of Steve is very dis­turb­ing on so many lev­els, from its in­cor­rect le­gal ar­gu­ments about non­profit ex­pen­di­tures in the po­lit­i­cal arena to con­tort­ing in­no­cent acts by Steve to ap­pear sus­pi­cious. No Demo­crat would have been pros­e­cuted this way.”

The mat­ters for which Stock­man was crim­i­nally pros­e­cuted usu­ally would have been ad­dressed through ad­min­is­tra­tive hear­ings with civil fines as the worst penal­ties. But Stock­man — whose ap­peal makes a strong case for his in­no­cence — was put away for a decade. The am­i­cus brief and scores of con­ser­va­tive lead­ers are call­ing on the courts or the pres­i­dent to cor­rect this egre­gious wrong.

Steve Stock­man is an Amer­i­can hero who had the guts to ex­pose cor­rup­tion at the high­est lev­els.

If the abuses of power that now leave him shack­led are not in­ves­ti­gated and pros­e­cuted, then who will ever dare ques­tion the left­ist power mon­gers in the fu­ture?

If his con­vic­tion is not over­turned or par­doned, then Mr. Obama, Ms. Lerner and the lib­eral cronies who walked free from their own crimes will have suc­ceeded in crush­ing a good man who fought to hold them ac­count­able.

Steve Stock­man worked on be­half of all Amer­i­cans who are sick and tired of dirty politi­cians.

Ev­ery law­maker who cares about true jus­tice and their own honor has a duty to fight for Steve Stock­man. We wel­come your help. Rebecca Hagelin can be reached at [email protected]­bec­c­a­hagelin.com.

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