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LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Time for an independent counsel

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Was the 2012 presidential election hampered by President Obama and the Internal Revenue Service unfairly delaying conservative groups' tax-exempt status and restricting certain conservative groups' agenda? From leaked conversations between Mr. Obama and his election-team staff, it's a known fact that Mr. Obama thought he would lose the 2012 election to Mitt Romney.

IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman had extensive access to the White House. Mr. Shulman visited the White House more than 150 times in three years, more than any Cabinet secretary. It is not outside of the realm of possibility that Mr. Obama and his aides, at meetings with the IRS, were coordinating their attacks on conservative groups, including Tea Party activists. It is widely known that Mr. Obama has a deep resentment of the Tea Party and other conservative groups.

The facts are these: More than 500 conservative groups and five pro-Israel groups were targeted by the IRS, groups and businesses that criticized Mr. Obama were also targeted, as were at least two pro-life groups. (The IRS even tried to make anti-abortion activists in Iowa promise not to picket in front of Planned Parenthood, which is totally outside the jurisdiction of the IRS.)

Watergate and President Nixon's enemies list pales in comparison to what Mr. Obama and his IRS did. They hindered a general election.

An independent counsel must be immediately appointed to get to the bottom of Mr. Obama's abuse of power and interfering with a free election.

CHRISTIAN GATSBY

Birmingham, Ala.

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