TaxProf Blog: The IRS Scandal, Day 1829: Wyland Says Johnston’s Op-Ed Contains ‘A Number Of Breathtaking Distortions And Omissions’ (In the News)

TaxProf Blog: The IRS Scandal, Day 1829: Wyland Says Johnston’s Op-Ed Contains ‘A Number Of Breathtaking Distortions And Omissions’

By Paul Caron

TaxProf Blog op-ed: David Cay Johnston’s Op-Ed Contains ‘A Number Of Breathtaking Distortions And Omissions,’ by Michael L. Wyland (Sumption & Wyland, Sioux Falls, SD):

In his op-ed Bradley Smith’s WSJ Op-Ed Is A ‘Breathtaking’ Distortion Of The Facts Of The IRS ‘Scandal’, Pulitzer prize winning journalist and author David Cay Johnston has forgotten an old aphorism. When one points an accusing finger at someone, three fingers of the same hand point back at oneself. In short, Johnston’s response to Bradley Smith’s Wall Street Journal commemoration of the fifth anniversary of the IRS scandal contains a number of breathtaking distortions and omissions of its own…

There was a 2017 TIGTA audit report that indicated IRS review of applications for tax exemption that included other types of suspected political activity besides conservative, but that report covered a time period that began in 2004, six years before the 2010 inception of the “tea party cases” activity by the IRS…

Those who point to the 2017 report conveniently ignore a prior 2014 TIGTA report issued in response to assertions by Democratic members of Congress who sought to document the ecumenical nature of the IRS activity. 

That report confirmed that the overwhelming majority of the applications flagged were indeed from conservative-sounding organizations, and that the small minority of applications that were also flagged during that time appeared to be included in the group accidentally for reasons not related to their presumed political ideology or assumed activities.

The Center for Competitive Politics is now the Institute for Free Speech.