IRS apologizes for targeting tea party groups

Stephen Ohlemacher
Associated Press
5/10/2013

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Internal Revenue Service apologized Friday for what it acknowledged was “inappropriate” targeting of conservative political groups during the 2012 election to see if they were violating their tax-exempt status.

IRS agents singled out dozens of organizations for additional reviews because they included the words “tea party” or “patriot” in their exemption applications, said Lois Lerner, who heads the IRS division that oversees tax-exempt groups. In some cases, groups were asked for lists of donors, which violates IRS policy in most cases, she said.

The agency — led at the time by a Bush administration appointee — blamed low-level employees, saying no high-level officials were aware. But that wasn’t good enough for Republicans in Congress, who are conducting several investigations and asked for more.

“I call on the White House to conduct a transparent, government-wide review aimed at assuring the American people that these thuggish practices are not under way at the IRS or elsewhere in the administration against anyone, regardless of their political views,” said Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky…

 

The article continues at Associated Press.

 

RelatedIRS blames ‘low-level’ employees for targeting conservative groups

…Upon a review of the IRS bureaucracy, though, the Cincinnati office is not a random backwater outpost for “low-level” IRS rogues. In fact, the Cincinnati office is where determinations on tax-exempt organizations’ eligibility are made and is the only physical office in the complex IRS bureaucracy dedicated to tax-exempt determinations…

 

IRS Apologizes for Targeting Tea Party Groups in 2012

…An investigation by the Government Accountability Institute found that IRS audits for tax-exempt organizations have skyrocketed 79% under President Barack Obama.

One Tea Party group, Tea Party Patriots, rejected the IRS apology. In a press release Friday afternoon, the group called for a direct apology from President Barack Obama, and for a congressional investigation…

 

Cantor: House Will Investigate IRS for Targeting Tea Party Groups

 

IRS Official: ‘I’m Not Good At Math’

 

Flashback 2009: Obama Jokes About IRA Auditing Political Enemies

Back in May 2009, Professor Glenn Reynolds, better known to his followers as Instapundit, penned an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal in which he discussed some odd rhetoric from President Obama. Obama had been refused an honorary doctorate by Arizona State University, and Obama remarked, “President [Michael] Crowe and the Board of Regents will soon learn all about being audited by the IRS.”…

Read the whole thing.

 

As IRS admits it targeted Tea Party groups, remember IRS is Obamacare enforcer

…Remember, the IRS is the Obamacare mandate enforcer. What level of confidence do you have as to fair enforcement, and that “low level” IRS employees will not misuse information gained in connection with assuring compliance with the health insurance requirements? (I’ve been warning about that since August 14, 2009, IRS The New Health Care Enforcer.)

With the exposure of the Benghazi deceit and the IRS political attacks, I have zero confidence that the Gang of 8 border enforcement or other supposed protections actually will be enforced…

 

Mark Levin may have prompted IRS-conservative group revelations

Conservative radio talker Mark Levin appears to have touched off the investigation into  Internal Revenue Service targeting of conservative political groups back in  March 2012.

In a letter last year on behalf of the Landmark Legal Foundation, an organization he heads, Levin requested an investigation into what he called “misconduct.”…

…Levin told The Daily Caller Friday afternoon his organization had litigated similar complaints of political audits during the Clinton administration and specifically referenced the Heritage Foundation as one of the tax collector’s targets at the time…

 

Update:   IRS Inquisition Update

Along with targeting tea-party groups, the IRS may also have given extra-special attention to the tax-exempt status of some Jewish groups for political reason…

…The passionately pro-Israel organization Z STREET filed a lawsuit against the IRS, claiming it had been told by an IRS agent that because the organization was “connected to Israel,” its application for tax-exempt status would receive additional scrutiny.  This admission was made in response to a query about the lengthy reveiw of Z STREET’s tax exempt status application…

 

Update 2: Mark Levin: “We cannot have an Internal Revenue Service in the country that acts like the KGB!” 

 

 

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