Since this was the first use of TCIA against an agency, there was going to be a learning curve and I had no time to learn.
Isaac was escorted off of the White House grounds and carried to clean out his office by the US Marshal. The President, Troy and the other directors left quickly, not giving me a chance to ask questions. Hanging on to the cliff by my finger nails came to mind.
Senators Harrison and Whitby both stayed and when the door closed Senator Harrison spoke, “Since you’re not a politician – as if I really believe that – there are some things I would like to discuss with you about the IRS procedures that I’m sure you can expedite changes to. Call me when you have things sorted out and we will talk; in the meantime, Hank and I will try to keep the wolves at bay.”
“I’m sure I will be calling; I have a lot of questions. I suspect that pack of wolves is going to grow fast,” I said.
I went to my office to give orders to Anne, Andy and Ben on what I needed to be done. Forty five minutes later we had a plan worked out. OSHA and Labor were already working on the puzzle and had called Ben for guidance.
Maybe shaking one tree hard rattled some others. Calls were coming in from several other agencies that had slowly developed a ‘ho hum – so what’ attitude when replying to requests from the task force since Ben had taken over.
Frank called to tell me the CIA was in the process of redirecting a satellite over Harrisburg but not to expect a continuous feed until tomorrow morning.
I was just stepping into the Suburban with Secret Service special agents Greg Archer and Donald Gardner to go to the IRS building when my phone rang.
“What the hell have you done now? The TV news is continuous coverage on you. The reporters are furious – calling what you did a breach of government and demanding a federal investigation. Some of them are Senators and Congressman. The phones are crazy with the media wanting statements and interviews. ZNN is lining up senators for comments,” Jenny said.
“I will fill you in when I get home; it may be a while – make no statements to the media. Obviously I am busy; I have to run,” I said as I hung up.
On the way to the IRS I turned on the TV to see what ZNN was saying. Harry was making the official statement. The media was not nice to him. It had already turned into an ‘oh crap’ afternoon for him.
I walked into the IRS building as Isaac was walked out, “I should have known better than to tangle with you. Foolishly I didn’t believe all the rumors. They were obviously not rumors. Good luck,” he said as the door closed.
Greg, Donald and I walked to the security desk, “I need to go to the Commissioner’s office and meet his staff,” I said.
“Yes ma-am, follow me, by the way my name is agent George Conrad. Ma-am what should we call you, Commissioner or Ambassador?” he said.
“Ambassador will be fine,” I replied.
The other agent at the desk must have called ahead; when we walked through the office door, there were four secretaries standing waiting.
Susan Fisher introduced herself as Isaac’s personal secretary and the other three as general secretaries, Della Street, Sue Albertson and Mable England.
“I’m Roberta Jones – my friends call me BJ. In the public government arena most people call me Ambassador; BJ is fine behind closed doors. I need to see Isaac’s calendar for the next thirty days. Where is the assistant commissioner – I need to see him in thirty minutes,” I said.
Susan and I went over the calendar of meetings before Hapfield McCoy made his appearance.
We went through the calendar again with all speaking appearances canceled. There were several meetings that were reassigned to Hap as I assumed – probably wrong again – that he would be promoted by the President to the top spot. There were several we would attend together and several I would attend myself.
There were several meetings listed as ADP that caught my eye, “What is ADP? Sounds like a kinky sex act,” I asked Susan.
“Assessment of Delinquent Payers – it is where updates are given on delinquent taxpayers who owe more than $100,000.00 for extended periods and the negotiations to collect those funds. They have been given a free ride – mostly for political reasons – in the past. It was started years ago and expanded under the previous administrations,” Susan said.
“Why should there be negotiations? They owe so pay up or else. Put together two printouts, one starting with the largest amount and one with the oldest and I will look at them. I have to pay and be current, they should too,” I replied.
To end the meeting I explained what I expected Hap and all the secretaries to do and when I should be consulted. I also gave a brief overview of why Campbell was ousted.
“When we get the list of businesses, I want a rush put on it from this agency to supply the task force with the names. Please remember; this is classified and there will be severe consequences if it is leaked,” I said.
“On another matter the daily news releases from this agency are canceled until further notice,” I said.
“What about public relations?” Hap asked.
“The only public relations I want to see are by word of mouth expressing fear of the IRS knocking on the door collecting back taxes. That will happen as soon as you go after the wealthy, movie stars and politicians – they are not exempt and are to be the first.”
“The days of special people and special privileges are over. Get aggressive on unpaid taxes starting with the largest amounts first. Get me the list to review tomorrow,” I said.
There was no peace even in the helicopter flying back to Morton. On the way back to the White House I was on my phone continuously, everybody was wanting a piece of me. The important ones I answered, the rest went to voice mail.
The girls were going to meet me there. Since it was so late we had decided to have supper in the restaurant for a change.
I expected media to be there in force and was pleasantly surprised to see only Elmo and Hanna Page. Those two I could handle – in fact, we chose a table big enough for them to eat with us.
The special tonight was Texas fire grilled steak with all the fixings, rolls, mashed potatoes, salad, soup and one of those Texas style deep fried onions – we ordered three of them.
Little Jacob was sitting on one leg sampling my food as we ate. Little Robert was not going to be left out and took my other leg. Jenny was helpful and cut my food in little size bites.
It was a wonder the girls were able to eat anything because of the comedy. Both little boys were trying to feed me and themselves. At least the oversize bib that our waiter brought out saved my pantsuit from a disaster. They ate well, leaving nothing on my plate.
Jenny had ordered for them and their plates were clean too; the restaurant made the best Mac and cheese and chicken tenders. There were pictures – plenty of them – for the family album.
Hanna took a few that I was sure would end up in one of the family segments or be sold to other stations, but that was OK.
Out of the corner of my eye I watched ZNN on the TV. There were a lot of startled senators and representatives demanding hearings so I could explain my actions.
There would be no appearance at any congressional hearings any time soon. Or at least until the Harrisburg and ISIS/Iranian spy issues were settled.
There were no calls from Robert’s group, so I would wait until tomorrow morning to check my box and discuss the reports tomorrow morning with Robert.
I was tired, wore out and needed some private time with the girls to explain today’s events. After the boys were in bed we talked, among other things, about today. It was nearly midnight when the thoughts and fears had finally been put to rest.
Edit by Alfmeister
Proof read by Bob W.