IRS Running Amuck: Attacking Conservative Groups & Wasting Your Money
This story keeps expanding and not for the better. Just last week, we learned of the gross extravagance by users of official IRS credit cards which included: a $140 per person dinner at the aquarium in Atlanta, and thousands spent on novelty items, toys and personal items.
To be clear, these are expenses that WE the taxpayers paid for. It's really no wonder we can't get government spending under control if we are allowing this behavior within our government agencies.
Even more disturbing is the fact that this is the agency that audits American taxpayers. Imagine trying to explain to an IRS auditor why you are taking a popcorn machine or bath toys as a business expense, let alone charging them directly to Uncle Sam. It is simply unacceptable.
Today's news in filled with stories of family "stay-cations" rather than "vacations" because American families simply don't have extra money for expensive trips. And while a growing number of families are giving up trips out of town, we learn that IRS agents are staying in Presidential suites in 5-star hotels at taxpayer's expense. The hypocrisy is deafening and it's time that the American government become smaller-functioning and more efficient.
I hope you'll be as pleased as I am to learn that the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee voted on Friday to compel Lois Lerner to testify, arguing that she waived her 5th Amendment rights when she initially made a statement before the Committee. As you may recall, Ms. Lerner was the manager of the IRS division that was charged with overseeing the targeting of conservative groups. She had previously used the 5th Amendment when called to testify before Congress. The Ways and Means Committee is the other House Committee which has jurisdiction over the IRS. They, too, have been holding hearings into the recent abuses of this agency.
With July 4th only a few days away, I am reminded that life for the American citizen has greatly evolved over the past 200 years, the basic ideals remain the same: the government was created FOR the people, BY the people. The government exists to promote individual freedoms, liberties and justice. The government is to be directed by the will of the people. Government was instituted for the good of its citizens, to provide service to the people, and to improve the safety and lives of her citizens.
I believe that John Adams, Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson would be devastated to see how the Constitution - the very document that they put their lives on the line to draft - the document on which they pledged their lives, fortunes and sacred honor - is being tested, tried, re-written, and misinterpreted. They would be outraged to learn that government officials are using the 5th Amendment to hide behind and that areas of the United States Government are riddled under veiled secrecy.
My colleagues and I will continue to demand accountability from the IRS leadership and those involved in these scandals until we are fully convinced that we have gotten to the bottom of the misuse and abuse of taxpayer's trust. We will continue to fight ObamaCare, and the mandated IRS control of this program, until it is repealed.
All of us are apprehensive of, or maybe even fear, the powerful IRS. It is now our turn to let them hear the dreaded words, "you are being audited".
I will continue to keep you updated as these fights go on and I promise you that I will continue to work to eliminate the root problem of a government agency run amuck: a government overflowing with agencies which are over-funded, under-supervised, not transparent, and who have forgotten that their purpose is to serve.
Congressman Randy Neugebauer's Congressional website.
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