The ousted chief of the Internal Revenue Service is telling Congress that his agency made errors in targeting conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status, but he says the mistakes were not the result of partisan views.
In a prepared statement, former acting IRS commissioner Steven Miller was ready to tell the House Ways and Means Committee on Friday that the screening system agency workers set up was designed to deal with a growing caseload of groups seeking tax-exempt status. Miller said it was not due to "any political or partisan viewpoint."
He says that the IRS has instituted new processes designed to prevent the problem from occurring again.
Miller was testifying in Congress' first hearing into the targeting of tea party and other conservative groups by the IRS.
Official still probing political pressure on IRS
The Treasury Department's top investigator for tax matters is telling Congress that he is still investigating whether outside political pressure caused the Internal Revenue Service to improperly target conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status.
The Treasury inspector general for tax administration, J. Russell George, made the comment in remarks prepared for delivery Friday to the House Ways and Means Committee.
George released a report this week that criticized IRS officials for lax management that let workers target tea party and other conservative groups for intensified scrutiny. The report said IRS officials have said they received no outside political pressure to change their standards to focus on the conservatives.
George says the IRS actions raise questions about whether the agency treated all taxpayers fairly, a basic part of its mission.