Saturday, May 11, 2013

IRS Higher Ups Knew That Conservative Groups Were Being Targeted For Audits

So, the "it was lower level officials who did it" isn't true, when it comes to the news yesterday that the IRS audited conservative and Tea Party groups.

Hat tip to Katie Pavilich, linking to AP, with more at USA Today:

A federal watchdog's upcoming report says senior Internal Revenue Service officials knew agents were targeting Tea Party groups in 2011.
The disclosure contradicts public statements by former IRS commissioner Douglas Shulman, who repeatedly assured Congress that conservative groups were not targeted.
On Friday, the IRS apologized for what it acknowledged was "inappropriate" targeting of conservative political groups during the 2012 election to see whether those groups were violating their tax-exempt status.
The Treasury's inspector general for tax administration is expected to release the results of a nearly yearlong investigation in the coming week.
Among the groups targeted was the Richmond, VA Tea Party. They had received one audit in late 2011 from the city of Richmond, which was followed by a Federal audit in January 2012.
A January IRS letter to the Richmond Tea Party requests the names of donors, the amounts each contributed and details on how the funds were used. The Ohio Liberty Council received an IRS letter last month seeking the credentials of speakers at the group's public events. In a February letter, the IRS asked the Waco Tea Party of Texas whether its officials have a "close relationship" with any candidates for office or political parties, and was asked for events they plan this year.
"The crystal ball I was issued can't predict the future," and future events will depend on factors like what Congress does this year, said Toby Marie Walker, president of the Waco group.
Apparently, syndicated radio talk show host Mark Levin, who also heads the Landmark Legal Foundation, wrote a letter to the IRS asking to investigate this "misconduct." The Daily Caller interviewed him and posted a copy of the letter Levin sent the IG.
More recently, Levin said, conservative and Tea Party groups approached him complaining of harassment by the IRS, which prompted his organization to petition Treasury Department Inspector General for Tax Administration J. Russell George.
“So what happened here is we were contacted by a number of individuals with Tea Party affiliations and they were telling us what was going on,” he said. “They were sharing the information with us and we concluded the best way to handle this was to go to the Treasury Department — the inspector general’s office because the IRS per se we didn’t think would conduct a thorough investigation of itself.”
After that initial contact, Levin said two agents from Treasury paid his office a visit seeking more information.
“Shortly after they got the letter, two agents from the Treasury Department’s inspector general’s office did interview me fairly thoroughly at our offices at Landmark — wanted all the information we had, which I provided them and I also discussed with them what I considered the law to be and what I considered the violations to be. I gave them our various contacts and then they left and we never heard from them again, which is typical.”
Terry Moran must have been saddened at ABC to have had to admit the following on Twitter (Mediaite).
Actually, everything Obama is doing is making Nixon look like a choirboy more and more each day.

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