IRS Scandal: Lois Lerner called ‘Tea Party very dangerous,’ advises staff on targeting and ‘FEC will save the day’
Lois Lerner, the key player in the Internal Revenue Service scandal over special scrutiny of conservative, religious and Tea Party, called the tea party applications for tax-exempt status problematic, which seems to counter Democrats’ arguments that tea party groups weren’t targeted – as reported by the Washington Times.
“Tea Party Matter very dangerous,” Lerner wrote in the 2011 email, saying that those applications could end up being the “vehicle to go to court” to get more clarity on a 2010 Supreme Court ruling on campaign finance rules.
In another email, from 2012, Lerner acknowledges that the agency’s handling of the tax-exempt applications had been bungled at the beginning, though she said steps had been taken to correct problems.
“It is what it is,” she wrote in the email, released Thursday by the Ways and Means Committee. “Although the original story isn’t as pretty as we’d like, once we learned [that we were] off track, we have done what we can to change the process, better educate our staff and move the cases. So, we will get dinged, but we took steps before the ‘dinging’ to make things better and we have written procedures.”
That email suggests that agency employees knew they had gone overboard in their scrutiny, despite top IRS officials telling Congress that there was no special scrutiny of conservative groups.
In another 2012 email, Lerner seemed to take sides in a battle between the Federal Election Commission and conservative tax-exempt groups that were engaging in politics, saying “perhaps the FEC will save the day.”
The entire article and coverage by the Washington Times includes comments from Congress, check it out here