IRS Agent Testimony: No Progressive Groups Were Targeted, Despite Claims By Democrats and Media

But, according to Obama, there’s not a smidgen of corruption

IRS agents testified before Congress that the agency’s political targeting did not apply to progressive groups as Democrats and the media have claimed, according to a bombshell new staff report prepared by the House Oversight Committee chairman, Rep. Darrell Issa.

IRS agents testified before Oversight that ACORN groups were scrutinized because the agency thought they were old organizations applying as new ones. Emerge America was scrutinized for potential “improper private benefit.” No evidence exists that the IRS requested additional information from any OccupyWall Street group.

“Only seven applications in the IRS backlog contained the word ‘progressive,’ all of which were then approved by the IRS, while Tea Party groups received unprecedented review and experienced years-long delays. While some liberal-oriented groups were singled out for scrutiny, evidence shows it was due to non-political reasons,” according to the Oversight staff report, which was obtained by The Daily Caller.

“[T]he Administration and congressional Democrats have seized upon the notion that the IRS’s targeting was not just limited to conservative applicants,” the report states. “These Democratic claims are flat-out wrong and have no basis in any thorough examination of the facts.  Yet, the Administration’s chief defenders continue to make these assertions in a concerted effort to deflect and distract from the truth about the IRS’s targeting of tax-exempt applicants.”

This doesn’t shock me – especially after last’s months report revealed that Lerner felt she was expected to fix the problem of 501(c)(4) tax exempt groups for Democrat Senators seeking reelection.  If there wasn’t a smidgen of corruption, why did she feel she was expected to fix it? Also included in the findings:

  • Democratic Members of Congress, including Ranking Member Elijah Cummings,
    Ranking Member Sander Levin, and Representative Gerry Connolly, made misleading
    claims that the IRS targeted liberal-oriented groups based on documents selectively
    produced by the IRS.
  • The IRS’s “test” cases transferred from Cincinnati to Washington were exclusively filed
    by Tea Party applicants: the Prescott Tea Party, the American Junto, and the Albuquerque
    Tea Party.

Perhaps a low-level employee took Obama literally when he said “We’re gonna punish our enemies and we’re gonna reward our friends who stand with us on issues that are important to us.” – Barack Obama, October, 2010.