Response outrageous

Rest assured that if liberal political organizations had been harassed last year by the Internal Revenue Service, heads would have rolled, on President Barack Obama’s orders.

But it was conservative groups – exclusively – that were targeted by the tax agency.

Acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller’s reaction recently was the agency showed “a lack of sensitivity.”

Miller, of course, knew of the scandal months ago and, despite being asked specifically about it, failed to admit it to members of Congress.

Obama’s reaction was that “if in fact” the IRS singled out conservative organizations, “that’s outrageous and there’s no place for it.”


It is known that the agency made the process of seeking non-profit tax status more difficult for organizations identifying themselves as promoting “tea party” and similar conservative philosophies. It is known liberal groups were not subjected to such harassment.

Yet the IRS head talks about “sensitivity.” Obama says that “if in fact” the scandal occurred, someone should be punished.

Members of Congress, both Democrats and Republicans, who understand the peril of the executive branch using government to repress political opponents are upset about the IRS scandal. They should be.

They also should be outraged at the reaction from the agency and the White House.

This is an abuse of power that cannot be permitted to be swept under the rug. Lawmakers of all political persuasions should ensure that does not happen.