House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) is keeping up pressure on the Internal Revenue Service with a hearing focusing on the relationship between IRS officials that vetted tax-exemption applications in Cincinnati and IRS officials in Washington.
Witnesses have yet to be announced for the July 18 hearing titled “The IRS’s Systematic Delay and Scrutiny of Tea Party Applications.”
“Washington and Cincinnati IRS officials have told Committee investigators that they understood Tea Party applications were being isolated from other cases and subjected to extra scrutiny to ensure fair, efficient, and consistent treatment,” said Issa. “While President Obama has already dismissed the head of the IRS in the wake of this scandal, this hearing will examine why decisions to elevate cases to more senior levels of the IRS led to unjust delays and unfair treatment of Tea Party applications.”
Issa said evidence gathered so far in the IRS investigation “makes clear that had Washington IRS officials simply kept their hands off these cases and allowed employees in the Cincinnati office to process applications independently, instead of facing excessive delays, these cases would have been processed just like other advocacy cases.”
“Witnesses from both the Washington and Cincinnati offices will be asked to explain why, even as dozens of applications for progressive groups were being approved, orders from senior levels within the IRS resulted in inappropriate and disparate treatment for Tea Party applications,” he said.