New documents released Wednesday by a conservative government watchdog group have revealed that a top Internal Revenue Service (IRS) official under President Barack Obama admitted that the agency’s office in Cincinnati, Ohio, targeted groups based on a litmus test of “guilty by association” to conservative causes.
After obtaining 1,593 pages of new documents from the IRS, Judicial Watch discovered incriminating information within them uncovering notes from a 2011 interoffice meeting showing that a top IRS official admitted that Cincinnati office agents targeted organizations – requesting tax exempt status based on “guilt by association” and “party affiliation.”
Incriminating evidence obtained
A statement made by former IRS Director of the Office of Rulings and Agreements Holly Paz confirmed that the IRS is guilty of “political profiling” to make decisions as to whether or not to grant tax exempt status.
“Cinci[nnati] paralyzed by letting any issue go unaddressed,” Paz wrote, according to Judicial Watch’s press release. “They think they know what the org[anization] is really doing – rather than looking at actual activities. Q[uestion]s were not activity based, but guilt by association questions – like q[uestion]s asking party affiliations …”
Judicial Watch was able to secure the new documents as a result of its 2013 lawsuit Judicial Watch, Inc. v. Internal Revenue Service, which utilized the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
The federal lawsuit demanded the following items from the IRS to uncover its wrongdoings and discriminatory treatment of singling out conservative Republicans to punish them financially:
- All records related to the number of applications received or related to communications between the IRS and members of the U.S. House of Representatives or the U.S. Senate regarding the review process for organizations applying for tax exempt status under 501(c)(4)
- All records concerning communications between the IRS and the Executive Branch or any other government agency regarding the review process for organizations applying for tax exempt status under 501(c)(4)
- Copies of any questionnaires and all records related to the preparation of questionnaires sent to organizations applying for 501(c)(4) tax exempt status
- All records related to Lois Lerner’s communication with other IRS employees, as well as government or private entity outside the IRS regarding the review and approval process for 501 (c)(4) applicant organizations
Determinations by ideology and party affiliation
The information received consists of notes exposing the IRS’ once-hidden agenda to punish taxpayers for their conservative political persuasions.
“Included in the newly obtained IRS documents were handwritten notes from an unidentified source at an interoffice meeting in the Washington headquarters, which apparently took place in or around August 2011,” the government watchdog reports. “According to an IRS court filing provided to Judicial Watch by the IRS, the notes were part of information taken from ‘four Chief Counsel employees (Victoria Judson, Janine Cook, Susan Brown and Don Spellmann), Tax Exempt and Government Entities Division employee Nalee Park and former IRS employee Sarah Hall Ingram.”
In Paz’ notes, she expressed major concerns about those in the IRS’ Cincinnati office targeting organizations based on their ideology and party affiliation.
Paz made it known that something afoul was taking place within the Cincinnati office by IRS employees.
“They see approval of something that will turn out to be very bad org – terrified of that,” the former director expressed in her note. “[That’s why they personally will need to have power to say yes.”
The note ended by exposing the underhanded and unlawful tactics employed by those working in the IRS’ Ohio branch.
“Agents felt if they could ask enough questions, they will find a problem,” Paz concluded. “Agents were jumping to negative conclusions and assumptions – particularly where relationship with political groups or affiliations.”
Copyright American Family News. Reprinted with permission.