You are hereFactCheck.Org: IRS Probe So Far Yields Partial, Partisan 'Facts'

FactCheck.Org: IRS Probe So Far Yields Partial, Partisan 'Facts'

-By Eugene Kiely

June 13, 2013- The House Oversight Committee chairman and the ranking Democrat are overreaching in recent statements about the committee’s investigation of the IRS. Chairman Darrell Issa has yet to produce evidence of his theory that the Obama administration in Washington “directly … ordered” the agency to target conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status. But Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings has failed to provide evidence that there was “no political involvement,” and he goes too far when he says “the case is solved.”

The two men have been engaged in a high-profile exchange in recent days over the Obama administration’s level of involvement in the IRS controversy. The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration found that the IRS used “inappropriate criteria” to determine the tax-exempt status of “social welfare” groups. Specifically, the IRS singled out groups for extra scrutiny based on search terms that were exclusively conservative descriptors – including names, such as “tea party” or “patriot,” or policy positions, such as concern over government spending and debt.

The back-and-forth between Issa and Cummings began after Issa went on CNN’s “State of the Union” on June 2 to allege that Obama administration officials in Washington ordered the targeting of conservative groups.

Issa, June 2: As you know, as late as last week the administration’s still trying to say there’s a few rogue agents in Cincinnati, when in fact the indication is they were directly being ordered from Washington.

The IG report found no evidence of that. In fact, the report said that employees in the Cincinnati office “developed and implemented” the “inappropriate critiera” in early 2010 and Lois Lerner, the director of the exempt organizations division, “immediately directed that the criteria be changed” once she learned about it in June 2011.