IRS Union PAC Gave 94 Percent of Donations to Democrats

Wednesday, 30 Jul 2014 12:10 PM

By Melanie Batley

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The PAC that is an extension of the union representing Internal Revenue Service employees donated 94 percent of its total political contributions to Democrats during the 2012 election cycle.

TEPAC, which receives voluntary contributions from IRS employees who are represented by the National Treasury Employees Union, gave a total of $583,912 to federal candidates, only 4 percent of which went to Republicans, according to a syndicated column written by Jeff Bergner, a former federal official.

Bergner suggests there is a troubling link between IRS employee political affiliation and the tea party targeting scandal. Furthermore, the current president of the NTEU, Colleen Kelley, has been a vocal opponent of the tea party, Bergner wrote, and has visited the White House at least 11 times during the Obama administration, most recently on March 31, 2010.

In the two days after that meeting, the IRS developed its guidance for the handling applications from organizations for tax exempt status, Bergner said.

Meanwhile, there are 200 union representatives employed by the IRS who are paid salaries by the taxpayer, not through union dues. Some earn in excess of $100,000 per year to exclusively focus on union work, according to Bergner.

In total, the cost to taxpayers for IRS union work in 2013 was $23.5 million, and added up to 573,319 man hours.

"In a perfect Orwellian formulation, this union work is called 'official time,'" wrote Bergner.

"What do these union workers do? They are essentially paid to lobby the very same government for which they work. In order to combat the apparently permanent federal employee problem of 'low morale'—well earned in the case of the IRS," Bergner wrote.

Union workers employed by the IRS lobby the agency for higher salaries, more generous benefit packages, job security, and "outrageous, unearned government bonuses," Bergner said.

He added that $70 million in bonuses were paid to employees in 2013 at the height of the IRS targeting investigations as a result of a previously negotiated contract with the NTEU.

"We are well beyond the issue of political targeting by a powerful but supposedly neutral government agency. We are into a massive political cover-up, which hints strongly at destruction of records and obstruction of justice," Bergner wrote.

"It is long past time for the appointment of a special prosecutor to bring some accountability to the out of control, self-dealing agency which is the IRS," he concluded.

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