Granted, virtually everyone understands the broad strokes of what happened at the IRS over the last few years, yet Democrats keep dredging up false equivalencies — so it’s useful to trumpet additional data like this. Via NPR:
A House Ways and Means Committee staff analysis of the applications of 111 conservative and progressive groups applying for tax exempt status found conservative applicants faced, “more questions, more denials, more delays,” says committee Chairman Dave Camp, R-Mich. That is, when the IRS sent groups letters asking for further information, conservative groups were asked more questions — on average, three times more. All of the groups with “progressive” in their name were ultimately approved, while only 46 percent of conservative groups won approval. Others are still waiting for an answer or gave up.
Right-leaning groups were asked triple the number of questions (like this, and this), and ended up getting shot down more than half the time. Lefty organizations skated by with fewer inquiries and were all approved. Let’s examine the raw numbers:
To recap: Conservatives won the “who got scrutinized” category 104-7, the “who got rejected” column 54 percent to zero, and the “still in limbo or gave up” tally 56-0. Indeed, as this controversy unfolded, a USA Today analysis determined that over a 27-month period, not a single Tea Party tax-exempt application was given the green light, while “dozens” of liberal applicants were rubber-stamped. The “both sides were targeted, and Issa lied!” crowd can huff and puff all they want, but they can’t change these facts. There’s also the tiny details that (a) the IRS conducted its own internal investigation prior to the IG audit, and reached very similar conclusions, which (b) is why they admitted to and apologized for the improper targeting of conservatives. Meanwhile, the leaders of several established right-leaning groups are now alleging that the IRS abruptly began challenging their previously-granted tax statuses during this same time frame, thus forcing their organizations to divert significant resources to legal fees. Chairman Issa has asked the Inspector General to broaden his probe to include these new accusations. Ranking Democrat Elijah Cummings — who went from being “outraged” at the IRS, to declaring the issue “solved,” to demanding further investigations — has objected to Issa’s request. Has Cummings re-embraced his “problem solved” posture, perhaps? For a “phony” scandal, this story sure seems to have an awful lot of loose threads.