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September 08, 2014

Senate Report Says No Political Bias in IRS Targeting

A Senate investigative panel issued a report Friday that criticizes the Internal Revenue Service's methods in scrutinizing politically active organizations but says there is no evidence of bias in the agency's actions, The Washington Post writes. The Democrat-led Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations also took the IRS's independent watchdog to task, saying he failed to make clear in a highly publicized audit last year that the agency targeted liberal as well as conservative groups.

Senate Republicans dissented from the report's conclusions, defending the prior inquiry by Russell George, the Treasury Department's inspector general for tax administration, and asserting that more than 80 percent of groups seeking nonprofit status that were subjected to heightened review by the IRS were right-leaning.

The IRS said Friday that due to in-house computer problems, it is unable to recover emails from five more employees who figure in the investigation of alleged targeting, writes The Wall Street Journal. Congressional Republicans have questioned the agency over the loss of thousands of emails to and from Lois Lerner, the former IRS official at the center of the investigation, due to a crash of her computer in 2011.