Really Reaching on IRS “Bias”

If you want to see how far conservative media are reaching to keep the “IRS Scandal” alive, check out this report from the Washington Times‘ Stephen Dinan:

Even as the IRS faces growing heat over Lois G. Lerner and the tea party targeting scandal, a government watchdog said Wednesday it’s pursuing cases against three other tax agency employees and offices suspected of illegal political activity in support of President Obama and fellow Democrats.

In one case the Office of Special Counsel, which investigates federal employees who conduct politics on government time, said it was “commonplace” in a Dallas IRS office for employees to have pro-Obama screensavers on their computers, and to have campaign-style buttons and stickers at their office….

Another IRS employee in Kentucky has agreed to serve a 14-day suspension for blasting Republicans in a conversation with a taxpayer.

Is there any connection whatsoever between these random examples from a universe of approximately 106,000 IRS employees and the section of the agency that deals with tax exemptions for political non-profits? Apparently not. Does that keep Republicans from alleging one? Of course not.

Republicans on Capitol Hill… said the report showed an agency “out of control.”

“It’s no surprise that this is coming from the very same agency that targeted Americans based on their political beliefs,” said Rep. Sam Johnson, Texas Republican. “How can the American people trust IRS employees to perform their job duties in good faith?”

And how can the American people trust Members of Congress who show such bad faith in adding 2 and 2 and coming up with 666? Beats me.

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.