Rangel to IRS official: Citizens United was ‘invitation… for abuse’ of the tax code

By David Edwards
Friday, May 17, 2013 12:29 EDT
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Charles Rangel at House hearing (CBS News screen grab)
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The outgoing acting Internal Revenue Service commissioner on Friday told Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY) that applications for 501(c)4 groups had doubled since the Supreme Court’s Citizen United ruling, which opened the floodgates for unlimited political spending by corporations.

“The applications for this type of corporation increased dramatically, did it not?” Rangel asked acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller at a House Committee on Ways and Means hearing.

“They did double,” Miller agreed.

“So, you don’t have to be a political expert to know that there was an increase in political donations given to 501(c)4s,” Rangel continued. “So, again, it’s almost an invitation as the law is written for abuse in terms of political activities for corporations that are primarily are supposed to be doing a social service work. Is that not correct?”

“It is something we have to look at closely, yes,” Miller replied.

“I mean, you should have wanted to look at this earlier before this — what my [Republican] friends want to call a scandal,” Rangel insisted. “I mean, this is wrong to abuse the tax system. This screams out for tax reform. Does it not?”

“I think it’s an area ripe for redefinition and reform,” Miller admitted.

Watch this video from CBS News, broadcast May 17, 2013.

David Edwards
David Edwards
David Edwards has served as an editor at Raw Story since 2006. His work can also be found at Crooks & Liars, and he's also been published at The BRAD BLOG. He came to Raw Story after working as a network manager for the state of North Carolina and as as engineer developing enterprise resource planning software. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidEdwards.
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