Search  |  Login  |  Register

US Senate Demands Answers from IRS

By Nathanael Bennett1331824256000

There is good news to report from Capitol Hill that relates to our ongoing efforts to defend Tea Party groups from an intimidation effort by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The Senate has now engaged.

First, by way background, we represent a number of Tea Party groups from across the nation that have received intrusive demands for information from the IRS. In addition to providing legal assistance with these demands, we’ve also publically called on Congress to provide appropriate oversight, and to require the IRS to give answers for why these demands have been levied.

Yesterday, we received word that 12 U.S. Senators led by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH), and including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) sent a letter to IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman requesting detailed information about this situation.

Among other things, the Senators requested answers on why such detailed donor information was requested, why the required response period was so short, and why it seems conservative groups have received specific scrutiny. Finally, the letter requests that no further inquiries be made until this information has been provided to the Senate, and it is demonstrated that the activities in question are supported by the law and applied equitably and free of political bias.

This engagement is a significant development and we applaud the Senators for their action. The other U.S. Senators who signed the letter are Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Bob Corker (R-TN), Pat Roberts (R-KS), John Cornyn (TX), Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), Jon Kyl (R-AZ), John Thune (R-SD) and Rand Paul (R-KY).

Additionally, we know that House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee Chairman Charles Boustany (R-LA) is also concerned about the issue, as he previously sent this letter to Commissioner Shulman. It is encouraging to see both the House and Senate requesting this information from the IRS. Should adequate information not be promptly provided, we hope the appropriate committees will call the IRS to testify before them.

As we continue working aggressively to defend the Tea Party groups from these aggressive actions, we will continue to respectfully call on Congress to exercise its clear oversight authority on the matter. It is imperative that the IRS be properly restrained within its constitutional and statutory bounds, and it is Congress that can provide that assurance. These two letters provide a positive first step in that direction.

Nearly 40,000 Americans have signed on to the ACLJ's petition calling for Congress to investigate this apparent IRS attempt to silence the Tea Party and other conservative groups.  Add your name to this critical petiton today.

Latest in
Free Speech

Surprise: 30k “Lost” IRS Emails Found

By Matthew Clark1416860401231

Surprise. Surprise. 30,000 of Lois Lerner’s mysteriously “lost” emails, which the Obama Administration and Democrats in Congress claimed were gone forever, have been found. We knew the Obama Administration’s bizarre claim that the emails were unrecoverable, deleted, not backed up, crashed, and on...

read more

A Move to Preserve Internet Freedom

By Nathanael Bennett1416263498307

Last Spring, we told you about the Obama Administration’s plan to transfer control over key functions of the Internet to a multi-national body . In response, more than 123,000 of you spoke out in opposition to the President’s plan, and in favor of the freedom that has been the hallmark of the...

read more

Protecting Pro-Life Counselors

By Edward White1414613427989

When one thinks of those who prevent women from learning the truth about abortion, one generally thinks about Planned Parenthood, not the police. Yet, that is what’s happening in Fort Myers, Florida, prompting the filing of a lawsuit by the American Center for Law & Justice (ACLJ). This week the...

read more

Equal Access for Religious Speech

By Walter M. Weber1414432535648

The ACLJ has just filed a friend of the court brief in the seemingly endless battle to halt discrimination against churches in New York City. The case is Bronx Household of Faith v. The Board of Education of the City of New York . Our brief urges the U.S. Supreme Court to grant review in the case...

read more