Share

Beltway Confidential

Report: Conservative groups faced more scrutiny than progressive groups

By |
Beltway Confidential,IRS,Ashe Schow,Dave Camp,House Ways and Means Committee

Conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status were asked three times as many questions as liberal groups, and fewer than half of the conservative applicants were approved, while all of the liberal applicants were, according to data compiled by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp's, R-Mich., staff.

The conservative groups experienced "more questions, more denials, more delays," Camp said of the 104 conservative applicants covered by the data. Seven liberal groups were included in the analysis.

While 100 percent of the liberal applicants were approved, only 46 percent of the conservative applicants were approved, leaving at least 60 of the latter still waiting for an IRS decision about their tax-exemptions.

"The facts are very clear — not only were conservative groups targeted by the IRS, but they received much higher scrutiny than progressives," Camp said in a statement on the data.

"However, this is just the tip of the iceberg; we have received less than three percent of the documents responsive to the investigation," he said.

Committee staff looked at groups containing terms from the IRS's "Be On the Lookout" list, such as "conservative," "Tea Party," "patriot," "9/12" and "progressive."

The committee only included terms specifically identifying political leanings, as identified by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration's report from May 14, 2013. Groups including the term "occupy" were not part of the TIGTA report.

View article comments Leave a comment