Power Players

Chairman leading Friday showdown on Hill: There’s a ‘culture of rot’ at IRS

Power Players

The Fine Print

One of the lawmakers leading the search for answers in the IRS investigation into how Tea Party groups were treated is Rep. Charles Boustany (R-La.), chairman of the House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee.

He tells The Fine Print “there's a culture of rot going on at the IRS” and that “heads will roll” as his subcommittee prepares for the first Congressional hearing on the matter Friday.

Boustany characterizes the new Inspector General’s report, which reveals that the IRS began targeting these conservative political groups as early as 2010, as “very disturbing.”

“At the very least it's ineffective management,” Boustany says. “We know some egregious abuses occurred at the IRS and whether it's ineffective management, negligence, or deliberate political egregious violations of First Amendment rights for political purposes, we’re going to get to the bottom of it.”

Boustany started investigating possible targeting of conservative groups by the IRS two years ago after he began hearing complaints from constituents and groups who “felt they were being targeted,” but says the IRS has been “evasive and misleading from the start.”

“We want to get to the bottom of who made the decision, who at the top whether it's at the IRS or higher up,” Boustany says. “Could it have been someone at Treasury, or even perhaps at the White House, that made this decision to go forward. This is a flagrant abuse of power.”

To hear more of about what Boustany says are “disturbing questions” that need to be raised in the ongoing investigation, check out this episode of The Fine Print.

ABC's Eric Wray, John Parkinson, Betsy Klein, Freda Kahen-Kashi, John Bullard, and Hans Juergens contributed to this episode.

View Comments (863)

Recommended for You

  • Diplomacy out, blunt talk in as Obama gets tough on GOP

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Diplomacy is out, blunt talk is in as President Barack Obama and his White House team single out Republican lawmakers by name for criticism over their words and actions on Iran, Cabinet nominations and climate change.

    Associated Press
  • Babysitter Calls 911 to Say He’s Watching Abducted Child

    The toddler had allegedly been kidnapped by the boy’s paternal grandmother and the girlfriend of the boy’s father, police in Washington state told ABC News. The girlfriend asked her brother John Truong to watch the 2-year old, and Truong was the one to call police once he realized who he had in his…

    ABC News
  • Kiev lists Russian military units allegedly in Ukraine

    Ukraine's army chief of staff on Saturday listed for the first time some of the specific Russian military units alleged to be fighting against Kiev alongside pro-Moscow separatists in eastern Ukraine. "Regular Russian army troops are still in Ukraine" despite a ceasefire agreement signed in…

    AFP
  • Shooting that wounded baby no longer considered road rage

    SEATTLE (AP) — A 1-year-old girl was shot in the head and critically wounded as she sat in a car with her parents in suburban Seattle.

    Associated Press
  • Fish found in suspected tsunami debris boat quarantined

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The wreckage of a fishing boat that appears to be debris from the 2011 Japanese tsunami was carrying some unexpected passengers — fish from Japanese waters — when it was spotted off the Oregon coast.

    Associated Press
  • NHL's Jarret Stoll arrested for cocaine, MDMA possession

    (Reuters) - Los Angeles Kings player Jarret Stoll was arrested on Friday at a Las Vegas resort pool for carrying cocaine and the party drug MDMA, also known as "Molly," officials said. The Canadian-born Stoll was taken into custody around 4:30 p.m. local time at the MGM Grand Hotel's Wet Republic…

    Reuters
  • Americans Are Changing Their Minds About Pot Legalization

    A new Pew Research Center poll has found that 53 percent of Americans believe marijuana use should be legalized. Twenty-one percent of Americans surveyed by Pew have changed their minds about marijuana and no longer oppose legalization. Meanwhile, a new poll from Bloomberg Politics shows that 58…

    Takepart.com
  • US military option 'old habit that dies hard': Iran FM

    Iran's foreign minister dismissed Saturday the threat of a US military strike against Tehran's nuclear sites, describing such warnings as an "old habit that dies hard" given ongoing diplomacy. Mohammad Javad Zarif, who leads the Iranian side in talks with six world powers that aim to end the…

    AFP
  • Missouri drops charges against officer indicted in shooting of man

    By Kevin Murphy KANSAS CITY, Mo. (Reuters) - A Missouri prosecutor on Friday dismissed charges against a Kansas City police officer indicted in February by a grand jury for the non-fatal shooting of a 37-year-old man last summer. The dismissal comes amid heightened attention to police shootings…

    Reuters
  • Limbo for millions of immigrants as Obama action stalls: What next?

    The ability of a US President to use government discretion to achieve major real-world outcomes became on Friday the heart of a wide-ranging legal discussion at the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans, which is weighing whether to lift an injunction against an Obama executive action…

    Christian Science Monitor44 mins ago
  • Merritt's 61 trumps Masters champion Spieth's 62

    HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (AP) — Little-known Troy Merritt one-upped the Masters champion Jordan Spieth at the RBC Heritage.

    Associated Press
  • South Africa attacks on foreigners spark anger abroad

    Countries neighbouring South Africa on Friday prepared to evacuate their citizens from South Africa as the UN raised the alarm over deadly xenophobic attacks which have displaced thousands. The anti-foreigner violence, which erupted in the eastern port city of Durban, has left at least six people…

    AFP
  • Sunken aircraft carrier rediscovered off California coast

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Scientists have rediscovered a mostly intact World War II aircraft carrier used in atomic bomb tests and then sunk at a secret location off the Northern California coast decades ago.

    Associated Press
  • Man gets 100 years for killing Montana teacher in drug-fueled frenzy

    A man who admitted killing a Montana teacher during a cocaine frenzy was sentenced to 100 years in prison by a state judge on Friday in a case that authorities said underscored a crime wave that accompanied a regional oil boom. Michael Spell, 25, of Parachute, Colorado, pleaded guilty in October to…

    Reuters
  • Can Drinking Milk Prevent Alzheimer's Disease?

    For the study, researchers from the University of Kansas Medical Center examined the dietary intake of 60 older adults over the course of a week. The team then performed brain scans on the participants to measure the levels of a naturally occurring antioxidant, called glutathione, floating through…

    U.S.News & World Report
  • Why Apple just bought 36,000 acres of forest land

    Together with The Conservation Fund, Apple on Thursday announced its plan to acquire upwards of 36,000 acres of forest land in the eastern United States, in Maine and North Carolina to be precise. The purpose behind the purchase is that so Apple can exert even further control over its paper supply…

    BGR News
  • Play

    Dr. Oz Responds After a Group of Physicians Calls for His Dismissal From Columbia University

    The TV host and physician at one of the country's most prestigious hospitals has come under fire.

    ABC News Videos