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Steny Hoyer can’t keep his scandals straight

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By Doug Powers  •  May 15, 2013 10:10 AM

**Written by Doug Powers

Keeping straight all the scandals, cover-ups, obfuscations and excuses for massive DOJ document seizures that are occurring during the watch of the administration that replaced the Bush era with unprecedented levels of transparency and rule of law does tend to be confusing. However, if these guys aren’t careful, at some point they might accidentally start talking about a scandal that the public doesn’t yet know about:

At Rep. Steny Hoyer’s weekly meeting with reporters on Tuesday, the Maryland Democrat was asked if he was concerned about the DOJ seizing phone records from Associated Press journalists working in the House press gallery in the Capitol building.

Hoyer’s answer was well-delivered: Articulate, clear, firm and precise.

One problem: He responded to the wrong scandal.

“The IRS activity was inappropriate, inconsistent with our policies and practices as a country, very concerning, needs to be reviewed carefully,” Hoyer, one of the top-ranking House Democrats, said in response to a question from Fox News’ Chad Pergram about the DOJ. “We need to ensure that this does not happen again, and we need to find out how long it continued, when it was stopped. It is my understanding—there was a front-page story on this at the [Washington] Post—it’s my understanding that [IRS official] Lois Lerner, who was apparently overseeing this, at some point in time found out about this and said …”

When Hoyer named Lerner, Pergram interrupted.

“We’re talking about two things,” Pergram, who apparently had not heard the first mention of the IRS, said from across the table, “You said Lois Lerner and the IRS.”

Another reporter sitting closer to Hoyer, Public Radio International’s Todd Zwillich, learned over and said softly, “He’s talking about the AP story.”

“Oh, I’m sorry, I’m sorry, excuse me,” Hoyer said, pausing briefly. “Whatever happened, we need to find out why it happened. But clearly it should not have happened. I don’t know enough about whether there was a warrant sought.”

Maybe the three should be condensed into one big scandal — APBenghazIRS — just so no matter which they’re commenting on, they’ve got the right one.

(h/t Guy Benson)

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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