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Letter to Barack Obama, President of the United States - IRS Targeting Controversy


Location: Washington, DC

Dear Mr. President,

I held three town hall meetings this past weekend. As you might expect, the response to the attacks in Benghazi and admissions of mismanagement at the IRS were among the most fervent topics of conversation. When I am home this coming weekend, I expect that the Department of Justice's subpoena of Associated Press journalists' phone records will, rightly, be added to the list. These situations are eroding what little confidence many of the people I represent have in their government.

On September 11, 2012, four people died in the terrorist attack in Benghazi, and dozens of people have died at U.S. foreign diplomatic offices over the past several decades. Despite the politics, these are failures worthy of investigation and reason enough for reforms to make sure this never happens again. The people in my district in Georgia and all across the country demand answers, and it's critical that we understand what happened to prevent further attacks.

I'm very concerned about admissions that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) applied heightened scrutiny to the applications for tax exempt status of certain groups based simply on the perceived partisan descriptors in their names. Nobody loves the IRS, but at least we've been able to count on them being independent and non-partisan. Partisan profiling flies in the face of everything we stand for as a country, and political cherry picking of organizations for in-depth investigation only adds to the public's distrust of the federal government.

The facts about the Associated Press subpoena are only beginning to come out. I understand that the government needs to investigate leaks of classified information that put Americans in danger. But initial reports appear to show an uncommonly expansive investigation without much detail about the justification.

It is fundamental that the government follows and enforces the law without bias, and that we learn from our mistakes so that Americans all over the world are safe. I urge your Administration to fully comply with current and future Congressional investigations to try to restore our country's confidence in those principles.

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