I am not surprised that Ms. Lerner’s emails were found. As an old IT guy who is very familiar with the email system used by the IRS I found it almost impossible to believe that the IRS was so inept with implementing their email backup policies that they could not retrieve her emails. They do not pay IT guys enough to take on that risk without direct orders from upper management. In fact several people familiar with the IRS email systems said it was unlikely the backup tapes were permanently lost because government IT systems almost never destroy or re-use backup tapes. They just buy more. My solution to finding the missing tapes was to arrest the IT guys and see if that improves their memory. Fortunately they did not have to resort to that since Ms. Lerner’s email records were “right where you would expect them to be”. If this report is true, then the question becomes when did the IRS leadership know of the cover-up, what did they do about it, and why did the IRS deliberately impede an ongoing investigation. If the cover-up stretches up to the White House this could be another case like the Watergate scandal where the cover-up is worse than the crime.
In fact, Camus stated, Lerner’s e-mail records were “right where you would expect them to be.” A year ago, the IRS claimed after two months of looking that the e-mail records were irretrievably lost; it took TIGTA just two weeks to find them in the usual backup records. The rather obvious conclusion is that the IRS didn’t want to find those records, and hoped that announcing them as destroyed would end the probe into Lerner’s records. If that’s the case, then it raises the question about just how much IRS leadership knows about Lerner’s communications, and how much they might be involved in them (worth noting: Koskinen came in afterward).