WASHINGTON, DC – Republican Rep. Jim Jordan claims that the IRS has essentially lost all claims to trust and credibility after the outfit has yet to furnish answers regarding the June 2021 leak of private tax documents of wealthy Americans. This tarnished reputation is further compounded by the heavily publicized Obama-era IRS fiasco that saw the outfit unduly targeting conservatives.
Back in June of 2021, ProPublica had published a report titled “The Secret IRS Files: Trove of Never-Before-Seen Records Reveal How the Wealthiest Avoid Income Tax,” which the crux of the piece is fairly self-explanatory.
According to ProPublica’s 2021 article, the outlet had obtained “Internal Revenue Service data on the tax returns of thousands of the nation’s wealthiest people, covering more than 15 years,” which, of course, begs the question: Just how exactly did these “thousands” of documents end up in the hands of these journalists?
The most likely answer would be a leak from within the IRS, as the last time there was any sort of documented security breach at the IRS by way of hacking was in 2015 through an exploit in the IRS’ “Get Transcript” online portal that has since been rectified.
Back in July of 2021, Reps. Jordan and Darrell Issa sent a letter to the IRS and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) seeking insight into the agency’s investigation of how these records fell into the hands of ProPublica.
Speaking to the Daily Caller, Rep. Jordan claimed that outside of the initial reply he’d gotten following the letter, the IRS has yet to provide any sort of update on the investigation.
“I don’t know if the IRS is on top of it. It sure doesn’t seem like it from the response we got back from them. Americans need to know that your tax returns remain confidential. This is one of the hallmarks of our system, and if that’s not the case, if they’re going to be targeted by the IRS like Lois Lerner did a few years ago and have their returns go public, that just can’t happen.”
In the IRS’ initial response to the July 2021 letter, IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig directed Reps. Jordan and Issa to Inspector General for Tax Administration J. Russell George.
When George had gotten in touch with the congressmen, he claimed that in order to compel TIGTA to brief Congress on the investigation then, the call would have to come from either the chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, the Joint Committee on Taxation, or the Senate Finance Committee.
And it just so happens that all of the aforementioned committees are run by Democrats.
Rep. Jordan believes that this June 2021 leak from the IRS has the stench of Democrats all over it, likening it to being a partisan scheme as the leak coincidentally transpired at a time when Democrats were championing higher tax rates for affluent Americans.
“Somehow taxpayer returns went public right when the Democrats were talking about raising taxes on the wealthy.”
The Republican congressman mentioned how “This is the same IRS that 12 years ago was targeting conservatives,” referring to when the IRS had purposefully delayed tax-exempt applications for conservative-themed nonprofits.
Rep. Jordan added that this behavior from the IRS is part of a larger pattern of the federal government being “weaponized” against American citizens.
“You saw it with the IRS 12 years ago. You saw it with the FBI five years ago when they orchestrated the spying on the Trump campaign. You’ve seen it more recently with the Department of Justice effort after a letter comes into the Biden administration from the school boards association. Literally, five days later, the attorney general of the United States issues a memorandum to all U.S. attorneys doing exactly what the letter asked the Biden administration to do.”