June 4th, 2013
12:23 PM ET
7 years ago

Partisan views of IRS targeting: political conspiracy or overzealous scrutiny

Washington (CNN) - Like a partisan version of the proverbial blind men touching the elephant, members of Congress have starkly differing views of the scope and magnitude of the Internal Revenue Service targeting of conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status that dominates headlines and committee hearings.

Depending on their party, legislators offer particular takes on the controversy based on which part of the IRS elephant they are describing.


Filed under: Congress • IRS
soundoff (37 Responses)
  1. truth hurts but realty bites

    Malory Archer
    truth hurts but realty bites
    So you are saying all of the liberal groups broke the law and need to pay taxes on all the money they collected and all of the people that contributed to them need to amendment their tax returns to exclude those amounts from their charitable contributions? Yikes... you have absolutely no idea what you are talking about.
    No, I'm saying they AREN'T REQUIRED to file.

    So you are claiming that laws, IRS rules and regulations are merely suggestions, recommendations, not requirements? Of course they are only required if the groups intend to obey the laws of this country. I guess the liberal groups think they are exempt from those laws according to you.

    Please do continue responding. You are proving yourself as incompetent and clueless as your Messiah with every response.

    June 4, 2013 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  2. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Of course you are "over this". It shows that the guy you voted for is worse than his predecessor and void of all morals and is a tyrannt!"

    Oh, dear. A dog barker.

    June 4, 2013 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  3. Sniffit

    "In effect, Dem Rep Kaptur is saying that its perfectly ok for the IRS to target Conservative groups because they may have "hidden donors""

    And she'd be right. As I've said all along, the correct conceptualization of the problem here is not that "they unfairly scrutinized conservative groups," but that they failed to similarly scrutinize all the other groups. The MSM and GOP/Teatrolls want it to be the former because then they have a victim to go on and on about and because, as I said above, if they allow the narrative to be the latter, it might end up in changes to the regulations that make it harder for these political groups...across the entire political spectrum...to generate millions and millions of free campaign advertising for candidates of both parties and, for the MSM, millions and millions of ad revenue. So no...it wasn't inappropriate to scrutinize these apps...BUT, they should have been scrutinizing ALL of them.

    June 4, 2013 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    "the investigation is just starting so of course there is no evidence yet."

    Then why is Issa and the entire GOP/Teatroll mob screaming conclusions?

    You have no answer for that, so please, don't bore me with an attempt.

    June 4, 2013 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    "" it is the Obama IRS" – House Majority Leader Eric Cantor."

    Apparently, Cantor doesn't know what "independent agency" means either.

    June 4, 2013 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  6. CaliforniaAc

    The law as it stands can be bent either way, and the new IRS Chief will clarify it to plug up all the holes, enough already CNN, stop fanning the MANUFACTURED SCANDALS by the GOP to distract us from the DO-NOTHING GOP party being wagged by the Tea-Potters to drown the cry of "we the people" who demand action to create JOBS.

    June 4, 2013 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  7. jpmichigan

    One question no one wants to touch. Who benefited by the action taken by the IRS ? Why did the Democratic Senators requested the IRS look in to tea party groups? Even the President during his campaigning (which never stops) spoke negatively about tea party groups, even though democrats, republican and independent made up this group. The 2010 elections were a disaster for Democrats, I guess that is part of the answer. If one cannot get rid of an opponent, you destroy them any way you can!!!

    June 4, 2013 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  8. Lynda/Minnesota


    Lynda/Minnesota :I am so beyond this story... the finger pointing... the bickering... and the not so subtle hint of impeachment hearings."
    Of course you are "over this". It shows that the guy you voted for is worse than his predecessor and void of all morals and is a tyrannt!

    You forgot to add the part of my comment that stated I am done with the (partisan) bickering and finger pointing. So just to be clear, AND in polite speak, AND for any future reference you might care to make to my comments, you can include yourself in that which I am also "so beyond".

    As far as your references to President Obama. Have at it. It matters to me not at all. Maybe at some point in the future, the GOP can try to come up with a candidate worth voting for. Until such time, it is what it is.

    June 4, 2013 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  9. Former GOP

    ....heck,...I WANT the IRS checking these FRAUDULANT POLITICAL FRONTS out.........

    June 4, 2013 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  10. ja

    it is mainly bs, the real scandal is congress itself, the budget failings, oeverall inability to work for the masses, not corporate

    June 4, 2013 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  11. Nothing At All

    Give me a break. If one was in charge of an organization which had just seen its workload dramatically increase without any additional personnel, the logical approach would be to maximize one's productivity which is exactly what the IRS did. All of the hand wringing over targeting conservative groups is obviously partisan in nature. Those organizations which had no controversial donors or activities sailed through the review process, those that didn't required additional scrutiny and clarification. If anything too many of these conservative political organizations couched as social welfare activities skirting the law.

    Is the IRS a bloated, inefficient and ineffective government department? Absolutely, thank Congress for creating this monster. The rules under which the IRS operates are so confusing and capricious it boggles the mind.

    How about the Congress investigates the Bush years to see if the same thing happened to liberal groups.

    June 4, 2013 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  12. just sayin

    Considering the only group denied their tax exempt status was a Liberal group,

    a total lie. many tea party and conservative groups are still waiting for approval nearly 3 years later. the obama foundation was approved in 3 weeks by lois lerner and she back dated the approval. no political bias there at all right?

    June 4, 2013 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
1 2