Rep. Kelly Responds to IRS E-mail Revelations
WASHINGTON — Representative Mike Kelly (R-PA), a member of the House Ways and Means Committee, issued the followed statement today in response to the committee’s releasing of three pieces of e-mail correspondence between former IRS Director of Exempt Organizations Lois Lerner and her staff which appear to contradict claims by Ms. Lerner and others that the agency’s targeting of conservative groups was not politically motivated. Copies of the released e-mails can be found here, here, and here.
“As intended, the committee’s ongoing investigation into the IRS’s targeting of conservative groups is producing critical results. Despite claims to the contrary, it is becoming increasingly apparent that the agency’s actions were not the result of two ‘rogue’ staffers pressing the wrong button at some outpost in Cincinnati but rather a deliberate abuse of power by high-ranking officials in Washington in order to harass and perhaps silence opposition to this administration. The content of these revealed e-mails is very disturbing, and underscores the importance of continuing our investigation until the whole truth is uncovered and accountability is restored. As I’ve long said, if it looks like a duck, waddles like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it’s a duck — and in this case, all signs indicate that we’re dealing with a legitimate scandal that is still unfolding before our eyes. We will continue to investigate and get to the bottom of this.”
NOTE: Rep. Kelly is a member of the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight and the original sponsor of the Government Employee Accountability Act, which would grant all federal agencies the power to fire reckless Senior Executive Service (SES) employees (such as Lois Lerner) on the spot, or place them on “investigative leave” without pay. The legislation was passed by the House of Representatives on August 1, 2013, as part of H.R. 2879, the Stop Government Abuse Act, by a bipartisan vote of 239-176.