On Tuesday, the House Ways and Means Committee will hear from leaders of six conservative groups targeted by the IRS, the Associated Press reported.
Among those groups is the National Organization for Marriage, an organization that says the IRS publicly disclosed confidential information about donors.
The leaders include John Eastman, chairman of the National Organization for Marriage, Diane Belsom of the Laurens County Tea Party, Becky Gerritson of the Wetumpka Tea Party, Karen Kenny of the San Fernando Valley Patriots, Kevin Kookogey, founder and president of the Linchpins of Liberty and Sue Martinek of the Coalition for Life of Iowa.
For more than 18 months, the AP said, the IRS targeted a number of conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status with intrusive questions and extra scrutiny lasting up to two years. Groups with liberal-sounding names were given carte blanche treatment during the same time.
On Monday, Russell George, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, called the targeting “unprecedented,” telling the committee that the closest comparison that came to mind was the targeting of political enemies by the administration of Richard Nixon.
“During the Nixon administration, there were attempts to use the Internal Revenue Services in manners that might be comparable in terms of misusing it. I’m not saying the actions taken here are comparable,” he said.
“A key question swirling around the controversy is exactly how IRS employees in Cincinnati came to identify tax-exempt applications for extra scrutiny based in part on Tea Party affiliation decided to take on the practice,” The Hill reported.
The IRS has blamed “rogue” agents in Cincinnati, but Republicans don’t believe that, given testimony made public by the committee that indicates they received orders from someone at their Washington, D.C. headquarters.
In tweets issued Monday, Drudge editor and Washington Times columnist Joseph Curl said the scandal is “about to explode.”
“Hearing from some top Hill sources that IRS scandal about to explode. Low-level agency workers miffed at being blamed. About to return fire,” he tweeted.
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