President Obama refuses to fire IRS employees who illegally targeted conservative groups
In May 2013, the Washington Post reported that the IRS had illegally targeted conservative groups for additional reviews. Organizations with the words “tea party” or “patriot” were singled out for harassment, such as requiring them to provide a list of donors, details about their internet postings on social networking websites, and information about their family members.
When this was first reported by the media in May 2013, Lois Lerner, who heads the IRS division that had conducted these illegal activities, claimed that only low level employees had known about it, and that no high level IRS officials had known about it. However, soon afterward, NPR reported that an Inspector General report showed that Lerner had been lying, and that she herself had actually been aware of it since June 29, 2011.
During Congressional testimony that had taken place in March 2012, IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman falsely said that the IRS had not targeted conservative groups.
Michael Macleod-Ball, chief of staff at the ACLU’s Washington Legislative Office, said of this:
“Even the appearance of playing partisan politics with the tax code is about as constitutionally troubling as it gets. With the recent push to grant federal agencies broad new powers to mandate donor disclosure for advocacy groups on both the left and the right, there must be clear checks in place to prevent this from ever happening again.”
The Washington Post reported that President Obama had not done anything to investigate or fire the IRS employees who had engaged in this illegal harassment.