IRS admits to targeting conservative groups during 2012 election, apologizes

AP_romney_obama_debate_121017_wgThe Daily Caller — Republican lawmakers are calling for a full investigation into the Internal Revenue Service after a top official revealed Friday that the agency specifically flagged tea party and conservative groups for review to see if they were violating their tax-exempt status.

Several Republicans voiced suspicion last year that the IRS was unduly focused on conservative groups, after several groups reported that they had been asked to fill out extensive amounts of paper work and go to great lengths to prove they were not violating their tax-exempt status.

Yesterday, ahead of a report by the inspector general for tax administration, the IRS admitted that it had targeted conservative groups for additional reviews, with an eye toward catching violations of tax-exempt status. Groups were singled out based on keywords such as “patriot” and “tea party” in their tax-exempt status applications, according to Lois G. Lerner, the IRS’s director of tax-exempt organizations.

…House Majority Leader Eric Cantor vowed in a statement that “The House will investigate this matter,” and Issa promised his committee would “aggressively follow up” on the report.

The fact that Americans were targeted by the IRS because of their political beliefs is unconscionable. The Committee will aggressively follow up on the IG report and hold responsible officials accountable for this political retaliation,” he said in a statement.

“There’s no explanation for singling out groups based on their political views—except for blatant political opportunism. It’s an obvious abuse of power and nothing less than government corruption,” said RNC Chair Reince Priebus in a statement.

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