Democrat demands answers from Bush-appointee over ‘flawed’ IRS audit

By Eric W. Dolan
Monday, June 24, 2013 19:42 EDT
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Rep. Sander Levin (D-MI), a ranking member of the House Ways and Means Committee, has called for a congressional hearing into the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration.

J. Russell George, who was appointed by President George W. Bush in 2004, conducted an audit of the IRS that concluded the federal agency had used “inappropriate criteria” to target tea party groups.

However, Levin revealed Monday that the same “inappropriate criteria” appeared to have been used to target progressive groups — and continued to be used after it had stopped being used for tea party groups.

“Please describe in detail why your report dated May 14, 2013 omitted the fact that ‘Progressives’ was used,” Levin wrote in a letter to George.

“The American public expects competent, impartial, unbiased, and non-political treatment from the IRS,” the Congressman concluded. “The same standard is also applicable to you and your organization. Your audit served as the basis and impetus for a wide range of Congressional investigations and this new information shows that the foundation of those investigations is flawed in a fundamental way.”

The audit stated the IRS was wrong to use “Be On the Look Out” (BOLO) memos to target tea party groups. But at least seven BOLO memos used by IRS agents included the word “progressive,” a fact that was completely omitted from George’s audit.

In addition, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) asked George during a congressional investigation if the IRS had “a BOLO for MoveOn or progressive?” George responded that he couldn’t provide a “definitive response.”

Eric W. Dolan
Eric W. Dolan
Eric W. Dolan has served as an editor for Raw Story since August 2010, and is based out of Sacramento, California. He grew up in the suburbs of Chicago and received a Bachelor of Science from Bradley University. Eric is also the publisher and editor of PsyPost. You can follow him on Twitter @ewdolan.
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