May 21, 2013
Kentucky Senator Rand Paul has called for an independent investigation into the IRS and its politically motivated harassment of Tea Party and patriot groups.
During a fundraiser in New Hampshire, Paul characterized the IRS targeting as “un-American” and said the Inspector General’s report “makes it sound as if there was some sort of policy directive” at the taxation agency.
Paul said the IRS scandal will create “such a level of distrust” that there is “going to have to be some kind of independent commission” to conduct an investigation.
“There’s going to have to be an independent analysis of this, either an independent commission or something to look at this, because I think frankly people are losing their trust in their government,” he said.
Paul also said it is difficult to believe the White House was not aware of the activity prior to the 2012 election. “People within the IRS have known this for a year and a half,” he said.
Meanwhile, Tea Party groups are planning protests in Atlanta and Cincinnati in response to the scandal.
The Cincinnati IRS office handled Tea Party and patriot group tax-exempt applications. The IRS has acknowledged the harassment came from that office.
A CNN poll reveals that the Tea Party has received a favorability bump in response to the scandal.
“Politically, the group that may have benefitted the most from last week’s news is the tea party movement, which may be getting something akin to a ‘sympathy vote’ for being targeted by the highly unpopular IRS,” CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said on Monday.