Why are there high-profile federal employees who violated the public trust, committed crimes, and retired with full benefits and pension? These are people that would be incarcerated if they had committed their crimes in the private sector. They were in the public sector to their good fortune, where people do not face the consequences and got rewarded for the rest of their lives at full pay. Let us take a look at just a few.
Lois Lerner, Director of the Exempt Organizations Department of the IRS
Miss Lerner was integral in a focused effort to eliminate Tea Party Groups before the election of 2012. Under her direction, these right-leaning political groups were either denied tax-exempt status or were delayed until they could no longer impact the 2012 election. An investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice and FBI, completed in 2015, found “substantial evidence of mismanagement, poor judgment and institutional inertia” but “found no evidence that any IRS official acted based on political, discriminatory, corrupt, or other inappropriate motives that would support a criminal prosecution.” Lerner was cited for contempt of Congress, and it was also uncovered that she had a second official email account under the name Toby Miles. Lerner was suspended and then reinstated to receive a $129,000 bonus and a yearly pension of $106,000. Her total retirement package could be valued at more than $3 million—an excellent outcome for the perpetrator of a significant white-collar political crime.
Andrew McCabe, Deputy Director of the FBI
Andrew McCabe was the Deputy Director of the FBI from 2016 to 2018 when Attorney General Jeff Sessions fired him. His termination came 26 hours before his scheduled retirement. This termination resulted from him releasing secret information to the Wall Street Journal about an investigation into the Clinton Foundation. He also lied under oath on four occasions about his part in the leak. His termination nullified him collecting his pension. McCabe went to work as an on-air consultant at CNN. In October 2021, McCabe settled with the Justice Department a wrongful termination suit he had filed in August 2019. The government agreed to restore his pension and other benefits, pay his legal fees, and expunge any fired record. Why? He admitted to the crime, so why the concession and restoration of his pension? Damn good question, but this is Washington D.C. No offense needs to be punished.
James Comey, Director of the FBI
James Comey was the seventh director of the FBI when Donald Trump fired him in 2019. Comey was terminated by Trump for his handling of the Hillary Clinton emails and lying on numerous occasions about his part in the investigation. Comey was a political appointee and therefore not eligible for a pension per se, but he did write a book and had numerous speaking engagements that increased his net worth by about $3 Million in the last few years to about $15 Million. No penalties, no jail time, just book deals and speaking gigs. Crime may not pay, but being a person inside D.C. politics can turn immoral activity into a book deal.
These are but three examples, and you may notice the common denominator is a left-leaning ideology. . It was a very different treatment than what General Flynn and Roger Stone, who had their lives turned upside down, experienced. That is the penalty for being a Republican and associated with Donald Trump.