It Goes Deeper: IRS Shared Conservatives’ Confidential Info With ProPublica Journalism Group


ProPublica, the nonprofit news organization that specializes in investigative journalism, revealed Wednesday that the same Internal Revenue Service office alleged to have intentionally bogged down Tea Party nonprofits and other conservative groups with needless documentation demands during the run-up to the 2012 Presidential election also shared the still-pending, confidential tax-exemption applications of nine of those groups with — you guessed it — ProPublica.

According to a story posted to ProPublica’s website late Monday, the group had, for months, reported on the activities of several political nonprofits — with the financial information redacted — because the general topic was newsworthy during election season.

But in light of the ongoing IRS scandal involving alleged sabotage of the Obama Administration’s potential enemies, the agency also admitted it’s only fair play to disclose, now, that the IRS supplied much of the information ProPublica had used in its earlier reports:

In response to a request for the applications for 67 different nonprofits last November, the Cincinnati office of the IRS sent ProPublica applications or documentation for 31 groups. Nine of those applications had not yet been approved–meaning they were not supposed to be made public. (We made six of those public, after redacting their financial information, deeming that they were newsworthy.)

… Before the 2012 election, ProPublica devoted months to showing how dozens of social-welfare nonprofits had misled the IRS about their political activity on their applications and tax returns. Social-welfare nonprofits are allowed to spend money to influence elections, as long as their primary purpose is improving social welfare. Unlike super PACs and regular political action committees, they do not have to identify their donors.

Applications for tax-exempt status are not allowed to be made public until after the IRS has approved a nonprofit group’s tax-exempt status. Notably, the agency reports that the IRS never offered up any liberal nonprofits’ applications for tax-exempt status. And the IRS hasn’t gotten back with ProPublica after the group requested to know who at the IRS is responsible for originally sharing the off-limits information.

ProPublica was launched with funding from the Sandler Foundation to “strengthen the progressive infrastructure” in investigative journalism. It received $125,000 from the George Soros-funded Open Society Foundations, an amalgam of other international foundations that, themselves, also are predominantly funded by Soros.

Personal Liberty

Ben Bullard

Reconciling the concept of individual sovereignty with conscientious participation in the modern American political process is a continuing preoccupation for staff writer Ben Bullard. A former community newspaper writer, Bullard has closely observed the manner in which well-meaning small-town politicians and policy makers often accept, unthinkingly, their increasingly marginal role in shaping the quality of their own lives, as well as those of the people whom they serve. He argues that American public policy is plagued by inscrutable and corrupt motives on a national scale, a fundamental problem which individuals, families and communities must strive to solve. This, he argues, can be achieved only as Americans rediscover the principal role each citizen plays in enriching the welfare of our Republic.

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  • steve buckner

    Obamma and Soros were in bed with one another on this. Obamma wanted to find out who was going to vote for him and who was not. By getting the IRS to stall these groups he was an automatic shoe in to a second term. Has anyone noticed how the eletes only want everything their way and everyone else does not count. Obamma literaly bought his second term with lies and deception. Now he is trying to buy the United States, showing his disregard for anything that that would make his office disappear !! Anything !!!

  • Steve E

    A baseball player who is believed to have lied to Congress about using steroids was tried in court for lying to Congress. But an IRS commissioner who lied to Congress last may by stating that he new nothing about the audits, is free walking the streets.

    • jdn

      Laws only apply to non government employed Americans . Cops break the laws and get paid time off , bureaucrats break the laws and get promoted , politicians break the laws and become heros to the their followers .

    • JeffH

      Exactly right Steve E. Bonds, McGuire and Clemens and all of the baseball players were lied to and then the “high profile” players, Bonds & Clemens were charged with perjury after the hearings and publicly dragged through the mud by The House Government Reform Committee, which has zero jurisdiction over sports or health care.

      The costs of the Feds’ obsessive pursuit of Bonds were estimated at $55 million in early 2009. These costs have doubtlessly grown substantially in the two years since. (One estimate is that costs of the Bonds prosecution now approach $100 million). Bonds was eventually found guilty for one count of “obstruction of justice”. The crime of “obstruction of justice,” a catch-all offense defined as “an
      attempt to interfere” with the judicial system, was apparently applied to Bonds because his approach to grand jury inquiries regarding prior steroid use had been less than appropriately groveling or confessional. Bonds remains innocent of any offense directly implicating him in the use of steroids or other
      performance-enhancing drugs.

      Compare these figures to the costs of the Clinton/Lewinsky investigation, $40 million, or the total costs of the 9/11 Commission investigation, $14 million. Remember that steroids are considered only a “Schedule III” controlled substance under federal law and are legally purchased with a prescription. MLB players were never tested for steroids until 2002 – after some of the alleged steroid use that Bonds was accused of lying about before a 2003 grand jury.

      Our government has become a corrupt government and anyone that disagrees with that is either deaf, dumb and blind or just plain stupid!

      • Todd Hill

        Called it!

    • Jana

      And why is it that the other Congressmen are so hesitant to say that Obama LIED or another congressman LIED when it is obvious that they did. Instead they try to soften in and say they misrepresented it (which means lied.

      • Major Domo

        They are afraid of the consequences of ratting each other out.