May 15th, 2013
10:30 AM ET
1 year ago

Boehner on IRS Scandal: 'Who is going to jail?'

(CNN) – The admitted targeting of conservative groups applying for tax exempt status is grounds for some Internal Revenue Service employees to lose their jobs, House Speaker John Boehner said Wednesday.

"The IRS has admitted to targeting conservatives, even if the White House continues to be stuck on the word 'if,'" Boehner said at a press conference on Capitol Hill. "Now, my question isn't about who's going to resign. My question is who's going to jail over this scandal?"

"There are laws in place to prevent this type of abuse," Boehner continued. "Someone made a conscious decision to harass and hold up these requests for tax exempt status. I think we need to know who they are, whether they violated the law. Clearly someone violated the law."

On Tuesday a report from the inspector general responsible for the IRS stated that lax oversight at the tax agency led to the targeting of tea party and other conservative groups who were applying for federal tax exempt status.

Asked after Wednesday's press conference what specific crimes Boehner was alluding to, an aide to the House speaker cited the illegal targeting of groups and the IRS's sharing of confidential information with the news organization Pro Publica, which said this week the agency shared conservative groups' applications for tax exempt status.

Obama first spoke on the controversy Monday, saying reports the IRS targeted the groups were "outrageous" and that there was "no place for it" in his administration. But he said he would wait for the official IG report to be released before demanding any action be taken by the Treasury Department.

After the report was released Tuesday, Obama released a statement saying the findings are "intolerable and inexcusable."

"The federal government must conduct itself in a way that's worthy of the public's trust, and that's especially true for the IRS. The IRS must apply the law in a fair and impartial way, and its employees must act with utmost integrity," he said. "This report shows that some of its employees failed that test."

Obama ordered Treasury Secretary Jack Lew to ensure that each of the inspector general's recommendations are implemented soon, "so that such conduct never happens again."


Filed under: IRS • John Boehner
soundoff (725 Responses)
  1. dick Delson

    Boehmer, maybe they should dump you in jail.

    May 15, 2013 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  2. Tim B

    Speaker Boehner, maybe we look at the head of the IRS during the time this took place and who testified before Congress that this profiling was not occurring. If anyone goes to jail, he would seem to be the logical one. However, for some strange reason, his name never seems to be high on the list of people you want to skewer. Could it be that this person (Dougles Shulman) isn't guilty of anything because he's a Republican appointed by George Bush?

    May 15, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  3. madelefant

    During the run up to the Iraq war and during, Boehner was one of the most strident war hawks even insinuating treason for those who weren't supportive enough. I say John Boehner should be one of the people jailed for leading us to war on false information in Iraq.

    May 15, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  4. Paul

    Lied into Iraq... 5000 Americans and tens of thousands of iraqi civilians die and Boehner wants no one to go to jail.
    Crooked investing leads to a financial collapse mostly paid for with tens of billions of dollars from peoples retirements and Boehner wants no one to go to jail.

    A couple IRS employees improperly apply more scrutiny to certain groups applying for tax-free status and now his panties are on fire? Boehner is a joke and a complete hypocrite.

    May 15, 2013 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  5. don in albuquerque

    Geeee, I don't know John. Maybe after they put the people in jail for killing thousands of Americans, tens of thousand of Iraqui and Afgan people, taking the world economy to the brink......you mean those people?? Have another merlot and go back to sleep.

    May 15, 2013 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  6. Dictator Obama No More

    OBAMA has lost all ability to lead this Nation.

    The People have NO confidence in OBAMA.

    THE PEOPLE demand Impeachment !!

    May 15, 2013 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  7. Dennis

    Boehner, you first.

    May 15, 2013 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  8. Herby Sagues

    I'm hoping it's you. You have done more damage to this country and to our party tan all the Dems combined.

    May 15, 2013 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  9. larry bud

    the entire obummer administration and associates is bascially a bumper crop of swindlers and thieving dullards.

    May 15, 2013 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  10. Anonymous

    i think feel that that the gop should be in jail

    May 15, 2013 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  11. David

    Honorless hypocrite Boehner wants investigation into targeting groups. Like the GOP targets gays, women, and muslims, I guess. Oh, and harassing the Occupy protesters, that was targeting a group they disagreed with politically.

    But it's only a problem to Republicans when it happens to THEM.

    Shame on you, GOP.

    May 15, 2013 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  12. Jack Dawson

    Is it any wonder that a huge percentage of Americans distrust their own government? It's not just one thing at a time, now the foulups are coming in droves. The people who are supposed to oversee their departments are so busy being sure they are not held responsible for anything that they don't do their jobs in the first place. Holder, Clinton, the IRS boss, and the whole bunch have dropped the ball. Leadership means accountability, something all of these people have forgotten.

    May 15, 2013 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  13. Just call me Lucifer

    Is it just me, or is it every time I see a picture of Boehner his eyes are so red it looks like he just got back from hittin' the bong? This is your brain... this is your brain if you're conservative. Any questions?

    May 15, 2013 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  14. Sue Pearlative

    They should go to jail, but only if the NYPD officers and bosses responsible for spying on, harassing, and falsely arresting peaceful liberal and environmental groups and bicyclists, and the and the UC police who pepper-sprayed peaceful students, and all cops who tased and in some cases caused the death of non-violent persons, should also be jailed.

    May 15, 2013 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  15. matt

    Does anyone know how to pronounce "BOEHNER"? Is he somehow connected to the bagger movement? Is there a relationship between the baggers and the name "BOEHNER"? Does anyone know?

    May 15, 2013 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  16. Peter Knight

    My response is you, Mr. Speaker for dereliction of duty to fellow Americans. It is far more serious than IRS conduct.

    May 15, 2013 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  17. headlessthompsongunner

    Who needs a trial, a judge, or a jury when "The Cigarette Smoking Man" is here to proclaim guilt?

    May 15, 2013 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  18. jc

    Everyone keeps blaming Bush and his administration for starting the Iraq War. I was 18 when the Word Trade Centers were attacked. Every single American was madder than hell and wanted to go to war. So all of you who say it was the Bush Administration who wanted/started this war, should really stop lying to yourself.

    May 15, 2013 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  19. joe blow

    It's amazing how most people on this board have such "Obama blinders" on. A FEDERAL AGENCY broke the law and you think it's no big deal because your can't do anything wrong President is in office. Who gives a crap who is President. You people and Barack Obama don't know your butt from a hole in the ground. get a life!

    May 15, 2013 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  20. SAYITTRUE

    Groups =Tea Party–Cross roads Patroit- ETC. Do not want to pay any tax. They register with the IRS from 501 (c) (4) internal Revenue code for non profits corporations. the requirements for a 501 (c)(4) status whice reqires IRS approval ARE NOT ALLOWED TO HAVE POLITICAL ACTITIVES AS THEIR "PRIMARY PURPOSE..........Now consider this, there are members of the Tea Pary serving in the house and senate. Superior court Judge Thomas wife is a leader of her tea party pulling in a heafty $250,000.oo for her "work" Crossroads another so called non profit represented by the son of superior court judge Salila. these orgaanizations can "LOBBY" a nice work that means buy the vote.
    now we have Borhner standing up and saying the IRS employee who dares to question if this TEA Party is political should go to jail. Well Boehner you first, Jail time for all those check's you and your buddy used to reveive and pass around on the floor.Who knows what you are doing and receiving now?
    Let's face facts, these so callled PARTY-PATROIT_CROSSROADS_ ETC. are run by people like ROVE, NORTON. who think they know exacty how to bend any and all rules and get rich in the process and NO ONE WILL STAND UP and SAY IT IS WRONG. YOU ARE POLITICAL AND NOT ENTITLED TO BE EXEMPT FROM PAYING FEDERAL INCOME TAX!

    May 15, 2013 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  21. NameRolph

    If Boner is the supposed head if the Repukes they have some serious problems.
    Always tan- cries a lot -generally looks like he's constipated
    Maybe he should hang out with George Hamilton – that's about the level of his intelligence

    May 15, 2013 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  22. Timmy

    Why are wall street traders not in jail? They did a lot more terrible things to the American public and yet, avoided jail time. Do you really think anyone will go to jail for this?

    May 15, 2013 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  23. No one

    Any bankers gone to jail yet?

    May 15, 2013 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  24. MARIE

    @Dictator Obama No More YOU MUST BE nutz! IMPEACH OBAMA THEN THE REPUBS WILL GET RID OF BIDEN THEN WE HAVE BOEHNER FOR PRESIDENT U HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME. ONLY THE SUPER RICH WILL SURVIVE HIM AND ALL WORKING UPPER AND MIDDLE CLASS WILL BE WITH THE POOR. MAYBE THESE GROUPS NEEDED ALITTLE MORE CHECKING OUT BEFORE GIVING THEM EXEMPT STATUS. BOEHNER NEEDS TO GO TO JAIL FOR BEING BOUGHT BY TEA PARTY ADVOCATES, NORQUIST, AND THE SUPER RICH BUSINESSES IN THAT HE HAS HELD THE AMERICAN PEOPLE HOSTAGE AND DEMEANED THEIR LIFESTYLES TO THE POINT WHERE HE IS BASICALLY ATTEMPTING GENOCIDE OF THE POOR AND MIDDLE CLASS IN DENYING THEM SOCIAL SECURITY MONEY THEY PAID INTO AND CONGRESS SPENT AND HEALTH CARE SO THAT PEOPLE WILL DIE OFF AND SUFFER IN THE PROCESS. YEA BOEHNER NEEDS TO GO TO JAIL.

    May 15, 2013 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  25. BL

    I think the fair thing to do is change the status of all these groups so that they start paying taxes. We're in so much debt as a country. Why do these groups who are doing no good for America deserve any special status.

    May 15, 2013 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
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