The Note's Must-Reads for Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Note's Must-Reads are a round-up of today's political headlines and stories from ABC News and the top U.S. newspapers. Posted Monday through Friday right here at

Compiled by ABC News' Jayce Henderson, Amanda VanAllen and Carrie Halperin

WHITE HOUSE SCANDALS ABC News' Z. Byron Wolf: " PM Note - Obama' Triple Threat Response to Scandal Trident" Triple Threat - There were developments today on each spear of the scandal trident currently bearing down on the West Wing. On the IRS, In a late afternoon / early evening statement from the White House, Obama promised swift accountability at the IRS and said he had accepted the resignation of the acting IRS Commissioner, Steven Miller. LINK

The Washington Post's Karen Tumulty: " Obama struggles to get beyond a scandal trifecta" The most corrosive political scandals are the ones that feed a pre­existing story line - which is why the White House could have difficulty putting the current ones behind it any time soon. In the view of President Obama's adversaries, recent revelations add evidence to arguments that they have been making about the president all along: that he would do or say whatever it took to get reelected; that his is a philosophy of rampant, invasive big government; that he has not acted within the constraints of the Constitution; that he regards those who oppose him with contempt. LINK

The Washington Times' Dave Boyer: " White House: Have faith in government despite scandals" Under siege from a series of scandals, the White House announced the first head to roll in the unfolding IRS scandal and urged Americans not to lose faith in their government. President Obama, criticized for acting timidly toward the IRS even after a top official apologized for targeting conservative groups, appeared at a hastily arranged afternoon press conference in the East Room of the White House to announce the resignation of the acting head of the Internal Revenue Service, Steven Miller. LINK

The New York Times' Peter Baker: " An Onset of Woes Raises Questions on Obama Vision" Thwarted on Capitol Hill, stymied in the Middle East and now beset by scandal, President Obama has reached a point just six months after a heady re-election where the second term he had hoped for has collided with the second term he actually has. Mr. Obama emerged from a heated campaign last November with renewed confidence that he could shape the next four years with a vision of activist government as a force for good in American society. But the controversies of recent days have reinforced fears of an overreaching government while calling into question Mr. Obama's ability to master his own presidency. LINK

INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE The Hills' Peter Schroeder: " IRS: First head rolls" Acting Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Steven Miller resigned on Wednesday over his role in the agency's controversial singling out of conservative groups. President Obama announced the resignation - which Treasury Secretary Jack Lew asked for earlier in the day - at the White House. LINK

The New York Daily News' Dan Friedman: " Obama announces acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller's ouster as White House works to contain scandal" President Obama announced the dismissal of the acting head of the Internal Revenue Service Wednesday evening, as his administration tried to contain a scandal over the IRS targeting conservative groups for scrutiny. Speaking at the White House, the President said his Treasury secretary had requested and accepted the resignation of Steven Miller, the IRS acting commissioner. LINK

Bloomberg's Richard Rubin: " IRS Delay in Disclosing Groups' Scrutiny Focus of Probes" The widening inquiries into the Internal Revenue Service are focusing less on why employees singled out small-government groups for scrutiny and more on agency executives who didn't inform Congress earlier. While an inspector general's report released yesterday blamed "ineffective management" at the IRS for inappropriate and slow handling of applications for tax-exempt status, it didn't show evidence of partisan motivation or influence from outside the agency. LINK

Politico's Ben White and Kate Davidson: " Jack Lew's big test" Jacob J. Lew is better known around Washington for budget negotiations than crisis management. But the soft-spoken treasury secretary from the Bronx, N.Y., in office just three months now finds himself at the center of a major Washington scandal. Both the White House and Treasury Department are frantically trying to insulate themselves from further political damage following revelations that Internal Revenue Service officials targeted conservative groups for special scrutiny. LINK

USA Today's Aamer Madhani, Kevin Johnson and Gregory Korte: " Obama ousts IRS commissioner after Tea Party controversy" President Obama said on Wednesday that he's accepted the resignation of acting IRS commissioner Steven Miller in the aftermath of revelations that agency officials were putting extra scrutiny on Tea Party groups' applications for tax-exempt status. In brief comments Wednesday evening after discussing the Internal Revenue Service controversy with Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and Deputy Secretary Neal Wolin, Obama vowed to take decisive action to ensure that the situation would not be repeated. LINK BENGHAZI The Los Angeles Times' Ken Dilanian and Christi Parsons: " Mistaken Benghazi claim came from CIA, emails show" Career CIA officers were responsible for administration claims that the armed attack in Benghazi, Libya, that left four Americans dead last fall grew out of a protest of an anti-Islamic video, an incorrect assertion that became a flash point for critics who say the Obama administration deliberately misled the public for political reasons, according to emails released by the White House on Wednesday. The 99 pages of emails from the two days after the Sept. 11, 2012, attack reveal confused and occasionally sharp negotiations among officials at the CIA, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the FBI, the White House and the State Department as they scrambled to craft so-called talking points about a nightlong assault that was still little understood. LINK

ABC NEWS VIDEOS "Obama: IRS 'Misconduct Is Unexcusable' LINK

BOOKMARKS The Note: LINK The Must-Reads Online: LINK Top Line Webcast (12noon EST M-F): LINK ABC News Politics: LINK George's Bottom Line (George Stephanopoulos): LINK Follow ABC News on Twitter: LINK ABC News Mobile: LINK ABC News app on your iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad: LINK

Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...