An obscure bureaucratic policy that allowed IRS officials to target conservative and tea party tax-exemption applicants during the 2010 and 2012 election campaigns is still in place, meaning the same abuses may be continuing, according to a nonprofit government watchdog.
The federal tax agency’s policy requires IRS officials to stop processing tax-exempt applications that are “likely to attract media or congressional attention,” the Cause of Action Institute said in a report made public Wednesday.
The policy also directs IRS officials to prepare “sensitive case reports” for their supervisors and to ignore “the merits of the application” if it involves a newsworthy topic.
“Targeting was—and is—IRS policy, not a violation of it,” the report said, noting that the policy is still in place. “As a result, American taxpayers are at risk for similar treatment in the future.”
“In halting the applications, preparing such reports and referring the matter to supervisors, including political appointees, IRS employees behaved exactly as agency rules dictated,” the report continued. (Read more from “IRS Policy That Allowed Targeting Is Still in Effect, Watchdog Finds” HERE)