Over two years, IRS field office agents repeatedly changed their criteria while sifting through thousands of applications from groups seeking tax-exempt status to select ones for possible closer examination, the findings showed.
At one point, the agents chose to screen applications from groups focused on making “America a better place to live.”
Exactly who at the IRS made the decisions to start applying extra scrutiny was not clear from the findings, which were contained in portions of an investigative report from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA).
Expected to be made public this week, the report was obtained in part by Reuters over the weekend as a full-blown scandal involving the IRS scrutiny widened, embarrassing the agency and distracting the Obama administration.
In one part of the report, TIGTA officials observed that the application screening effort showed “confusion about how to process the applications, delays in the processing of the applications, and a lack of management oversight and guidance.”
By July 2011, the IRS was no longer targeting just groups with certain key words in their names. Rather, the screening criteria had changed to “organizations involved with political, lobbying, or advocacy.”
But then it changed again in January 2012 to cover “political action type organizations involved in limiting/expanding government, educating on the constitution and bill of rights, social economic reform/movement,” according to the findings contained in a Treasury Department watchdog report.
In May 2012, the criteria for scrutiny were revised again to cover a variety of tax-exempt groups “with indicators of significant amounts of political campaign intervention (raising questions as to exempt purpose and/or excess private benefit),” according to a TIGTA timeline included in the findings.
Thanks kcvl for the post.
Justa-hairyape, jayster, AllAmericanGirl44
Pinging y’all to the post!