Congressman Olson troubled by IRS and wants feedback
By Elsa Maxey
One of the people in Washington, D.C. representing a collective voice from home, U.S. Representative Pete Olson from Texas District 22 says, “I don’t buy it.” He is referring to claims that emails connected to a former IRS official at the center of a Tea Party targeting scandal are forever lost because of a computer crash.
The IRS division official that processes applications to determine tax-exempt status, Lois Lerner is currently under investigation by congressional committees, the Justice Department and the IRS inspector general for targeting groups based on political affiliation, specifically conservative groups.
In a communication to constituents last week, Congressman Olson told them he finds the computer crash explanation “unacceptable and awfully convenient.” The incident reportedly took place in 2011, and lost emails are from 2009 to 2011, the time period in which they could allegedly show a connection between the White House and the IRS’s treatment of conservative groups. Other IRS officials’ computers are also reported to have crashed.
Congressman Olson said he’s lost confidence in the IRS, and even referred to it as a bullying federal agency when it targeted conservative groups. “I will continue to fight for honest, hard-working Americans to ensure that their tax dollars don’t go to corrupt IRS employees,” he pledges.
And, he wants feedback.
After all, it was King Street Patriots Founder Catherine Engelbrecht and her husband, Bryan, from Rosenberg who were focal in 2010, as they brought their IRS delays to light, formerly reported in the Star. After filing for tax-exempt status for True the Vote, a non-profit election integrity organization, and King Street Patriots, a citizen liberty group, the Engelbrechts found themselves targeted by government agencies.
According to the account, they were subjected to some 15 different instances of audit or inquiry, which began with visits from the FBI, and also IRS inquiries into Engelbrech’s Facebook and Twitter postings, political aspirations, and other intrusive questions. Lawsuits were filed against the IRS.
Earlier this year, Engelbrecht testified before the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs. She said that once she helped create the organizations, “I found myself a target of this federal government.” For a link to Engelbrecht’s testimony, see this story online.
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