William Henck has worked inside the IRS Office of the Chief Counsel as an attorney for over 26 years. We posted his personal account, including his testimony to a retaliatory audit conducted by the IRS against him, this past February in “Inside the IRS.” We followed up with subsequent posts including, most recently, “Inside the IRS, part 5,” regarding the promotion of Fred Schindler to a senior position within the Office of Chief Counsel. No sooner had we posted Bill’s comments than the D.C. Circuit’s decision in the Halbig case highlighted the underlying scandal. Kim Strassel’s Friday Wall Street Journal “The Obamacare-IRS nexus” contributed the necessary background. Bill Henck now adds:
It is interesting to note that Mr. Schindler was heavily involved in the implementation of Obamacare, and in fact was director of implementation for the IRS. That would include coordinating with the office of chief counsel on a basic issue such as researching statutory language. Based on the stories that appeared last summer, he was suspended for taking improper gifts and was slated for termination. Maybe that was all smoke and mirrors, maybe he was later exonerated, maybe a lot of things, but the bottom line is they took care of him.
Mr. Schindler now has a Senior Executive Service position in the Office of Chief Counsel after the normal selection process was bypassed. This is the latest example of a basic fact of life in the IRS: if you play ball, such as failing to research a basic issue such as statutory language, you get rewarded. If you dissent from the party or internal line, they audit you and your wife’s tax returns. Needless to say, all of the incentives lie on the side of playing ball. If you understand this basic fact, you can understand the organizational behavior within the IRS.