IRS Oversight Reignites Tea Party Ire

Agency’s Already Controversial Role Is in Dispute After Questionnaires Sent to Conservative Groups

Tea party outrage over a spate of IRS letters to conservative groups has revived a long-standing dispute over the agency’s controversial role in policing politically active nonprofits.

In January, the IRS began sending extensive questionnaires to organizations applying for nonprofit status as part of a broader project to understand whether social welfare organizations — which are not required to disclose their donors — are actually acting as political committees.

Campaign finance reform groups and lawmakers in both parties have repeatedly demanded that the IRS examine the activities of tax-exempt advocacy groups, which proliferated during the 2010 cycle and are on pace to play an even larger role in 2012.  Read More …

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