WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) and Senate Finance Committee Republicans are demanding information from the IRS and calling for an investigation from the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) on numerous serious reports of Internal Revenue Service (IRS) employees conducting illegal searches and the weaponization of the agency against conservatives.
In a letter to the IRS, the senators request information on several news reports to help the Committee better understand these allegations, writing, in part:
As Commissioner of the IRS, you pledged an oath to uphold the Constitution and become personally responsible to “ensure” that all IRS employees “act in accord” with each of the statutory taxpayer rights, including the right to a fair and just tax system. We are concerned that these serious allegations, which have occurred in a short period of time and represent a diverse array of taxpayers, could show a pattern of heavy-handed IRS misconduct.
In a separate letter to TIGTA, the senators request an investigation into one specific alleged incident of IRS misconduct and taxpayer intimidation, highlighting the statutory responsibility of TIGTA to supervise the operations of the IRS, including its criminal functions and employees:
Americans have a right to know whether the serious allegations described above are being investigated. We urge TIGTA to open an investigation immediately, and further ask TIGTA to be prepared to provide Members of the Finance Committee with regularly scheduled updates and briefings on the progress of your investigation.
This letter comes following reports from multiple, diverse outlets that raise serious questions and concerns about the IRS’s adherence to the letter and spirit of taxpayer rights—standards which IRS Commissioner Werfel has previously pledged to uphold.