Tea Party groups sue IRS, claim targeting was widespread

by Susan Ferrechio, The Washington Examiner  |  published on May 30, 2013

IRS
About two dozen Tea Party groups filed a lawsuit Wednesday that they said will prove the Internal Revenue Service’s practice of targeting conservative groups was cleared by top IRS officials in Washington and was not the work of low-level rogue agents in Ohio.

The federal lawsuit includes 15 letters sent to the Tea Party groups by the IRS asking detailed, often invasive questions about their operations after the groups applied for tax-exempt status. The letters were signed by Lois Lerner, head of the IRS division that oversees tax-exempt organizations, who insists there was no political motivation for singling out groups with “Tea Party,” “Patriot” or “9/12” in their names.

The letters, sent in March and April 2012, required the groups to respond in detail within 60 days. But conservatives said the questionnaires were part of a deliberate IRS effort to delay granting the conservative groups tax-exempt status in time for them to oppose President Obama and other Democrats in last year’s elections.

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