IRS's Ingram May Have Given Confidential Taxpayer Info to White House

Friday, 11 Oct 2013 05:40 PM

By Lisa Furgison

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The IRS official who was in the hot seat for scrutinizing the tax-exempt status of conservative groups is making headlines once again.

Sarah Hall Ingram, a top IRS employee, shared confidential taxpayer information with several people at the White House, The Daily Caller reports.

Emails given to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and obtained by The Daily Caller show Ingram shared confidential taxpayer information with Jeanne Lambrew, the deputy assistant to the president for health policies, as well White House health policy advisor Ellen Montz.

The conservative news site reported that Ingram went to the White House 155 times to meet Lambrew.

The exchange of information was meant to counsel the Obama administration on a lawsuit filed by several non-profits that opposed the contraception mandate in the Affordable Care Act, The Daily Caller said.

It its review of the emails, the oversight panel found large sections redacted and labeled with the number 6103. Section 6103 of the IRS code forbids any employee from sharing confidential information gathered through tax forms.

When asked at a committee hearing what those redacted areas said, Ingram replied, "I don’t recall the document so I can’t help you with what’s underneath that redaction."

Ingram now heads the IRS division responsible for implementing Obamacare. The agency is responsible for making sure Americans purchase the required healthcare or pay a tax penalty if they fail to do so. The agency is also responsible for issuing tax credits to consumers who qualify to help them cover the costs of purchasing insurance coverage.

Republican lawmakers are concerned that Ingram still has access to confidential information in her new position, something Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan made a point of in a recent hearing where Ingram testified, The Washington Free Beacon reported.

"You shared personal taxpayer information with the White House," Jordan told Ingram. "And now under the Affordable Care Act, Americans have to give personal information to the IRS — to the same organization that potentially shared all kinds of information with the White House political people. That’s what people are nervous about. That’s what scares a lot of people."

According to the Daily Caller, the IRS declined to comment on the Ingram visits, citing the government shutdown as the reason.

Related Stories:

Republicans Push for IRS Official's Firing

IRS Scandal, Higher Premiums Cast Doubts on Obamacare

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