A new staff report by the House Oversight Committee chairman, Rep. David Issa, says that Internal Revenue Service Agents testified before Congress that the agency’s targeting of political groups didn’t include progressive organizations, contrary to the popular narrative from the media, Democrats, and Obama himself.
According to the report, groups that were affiliated with ACORN received a second look to ensure they weren’t old organizations trying to apply as new ones, but not a single Occupy Wall Street group was targeted. One other group, Emerge America, was looked at because “some had already been approved and the IRS became concerned about improper private benefit.” However there was no evidence that these groups were scrutinized for political reasons, like their conservative counterparts were.
As many of you know, the controversy is over “be on the lookout” (BOLO) lists that were generated by the IRS. The latest inspector general’s report finds that the words contained on the last version of the list were specifically geared towards conservative-based groups while ignoring progressives.
The report says that “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.”
“[T]he Administration and congressional Democrats have seized upon the notion that the IRS’s targeting was not just limited to conservative applicants. 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.”
“[T]here is simply no evidence that any liberal or progressive group received enhanced scrutiny because its application reflected the organization’s political views.”
Of course it won’t be long before Democrats and the media try to downplay this report as something other than based on a lengthy investigation, as they always do. However with any kind of luck this helps with the upcoming vote to hold Lois Lerner in contempt for her refusal to testify in front of the committee, maybe then we’ll actually start getting some answers out of her and others who are responsible.
Does any of this surprise you, or did you know this all along? Let us know with a comment, we love to read them!