The Treasury inspector general’s investigation into the targeting of conservative groups by the IRS was limited to such organizations due to a request from House Republicans, the Hill reports.
A spokesman for Russell George, Treasury’s inspector general for tax administration, said they received a request from House Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., “to narrowly focus on Tea Party organizations.”
The spokesman for the Treasury inspector general noted that their audit acknowledged that there were other so-called be on the lookout (BOLO) lists.
“We did not review the use, disposition, purpose or content of the other BOLOs,” the spokesman said.
“That was outside the scope of our audit.”
The admission from the inspector general comes as Democrats have gone into full attack mode on George, with Rep. Sandy Levin (D-Mich.) dubbing the audit fundamentally flawed on Monday.
Rep. Sandy Levin, D-Mich., the top Democrat on the House Ways and Means Committee, who on Monday called the audit fundamentally flawed, said that when the audit was released last month, the inspector general made no mention of it being limited to Tea Party group.
In Levin’s opinion, this bit of non-information created the daylight for Republicans to attempt to tie the White House to the targeting of conservative groups.
“You need to get at the facts. And those facts weren’t given to us, even when asked,” Levin said. “The Republicans used the failure of the IG to spell out what they knew as an opportunity to totally politicize this.”
Republicans maintain the evidence clearly points to conservative groups receiving more scrutiny from the IRS, even if organizations across the political spectrum were on BOLOs.
“It’s one thing to say we listed them all down,” said Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, a senior Republican on the Oversight panel. “To me, it’s still the exact same fact. They targeted conservative groups.Some groups still haven’t had any resolution to their application for tax-exempt status.”
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