Members of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform today responded to a declaration regarding the investigation into the IRS' targeting of Tea Party and conservative groups made by Ranking Member Elijah Cummings (D-MD) on CNN's State of the Union with Candy Crowley. Ranking Member Cummings stated, "based upon everything I've seen, the case is solved and if it were me, I'd wrap this case up and move on, to be frank with you."
"While Ranking Member Cummings might be expressing the preferences of the White House and Leader Pelosi and WHIP Hoyer, the reality is until the American people have a full understanding of what went wrong at the IRS and why, this investigation should and will continue," said Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH). "It would be irresponsible for the Committee to "move on' as Ranking Member Cummings suggested with so many outstanding questions remaining about who knew what and when."
"How can the White House and House Democrats act so quickly to dismiss an investigation that hasn't even been completed yet," asked Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-NC). "One week ago, the White House Press Secretary spoke about "the need to find out all the inappropriate activity that occurred' and to make sure that "those who are responsible for inappropriate, outrageous activity be held accountable' -- does the President, Leader Pelosi and Whip Hoyer really believe that seven days later, they have all the facts they need to "wrap this case up and move on' as Ranking Member Cummings suggested?"
"Last week, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said the President wanted "a thorough review that would examine the behavior, hold those accountable who were responsible for it, and to examine the overall culture at the IRS' -- now the highest-ranking Democrat on the Committee investigating the IRS is telling the American people "the case is solved,'" said Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT). "The White House and Congressional Democrats can't have it both ways. They either believe this wrong-doing deserves a thorough and diligent investigation or they don't. Which one is it?"
"The American people know instinctively that there is a serious problem at the Internal Revenue Service and that this is the moment to resolve the issue -- not sweep it under the rug," said Rep. James Lankford (R-OK). "We now know that many offices were involved in the political targeting of Americans, but we have not identified the specific individuals, we have not seen all the facts and we have not fixed the problem. Day after day, the White House has told the American people that "the President is interested in getting all the facts' and "is interested in legitimate congressional oversight. No one, from either party, should try to rush to judgment, declare the case "solved' nor have the audacity to say the American people should "move on'. The IRS investigation should "move on" based on the facts."
"More questions than answers remain in the IRS targeting case," said Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC). "In fact, the most relevant questions remain unanswered: (1) precisely when did the conservative targeting plot begin, (2) who started it, (3) who approved it, (4) who knew about the plot but failed to stop it or report it, (5) why did the plot begin in the first instance, (6) why did Douglas Shulman visit the White House so many more times than even the Secretary of Defense, (7) why were invasive questions posed to certain groups but not others, (8) even if the White House maintains it was unaware, was the Obama-Biden re-election team aware of the plot, (9) who released confidential taxpayer information in violation of federal law, and (10) were other criminal statutes violated? These are just a few of the questions that remain unanswered. So, rather than saying that the case is closed, it is more apt to say we have only just begun to secure all the relevant facts so we can assure the people we work for this will never happen again."