The Treasury Department’s inspector general will review why two former FBI officials who ran afoul of former President
The intensive Internal Revenue Service audits of former FBI Director
IRS spokeswoman Jodie Reynolds said that the IRS Commissioner
“Audits are handled by career civil servants, and the IRS has strong safeguards in place to protect the exam process -- and against politically motivated audits,” Reynolds said in a statement. “It’s ludicrous and untrue to suggest that senior IRS officials somehow targeted specific individuals for National Research Program audits.”
Senate Finance Chair
“Donald Trump has no respect for the rule of law, so if he tried to subject his political enemies to additional IRS scrutiny that would surprise no one,” Wyden, an Oregon Democrat, said in a statement.
Wyden and Brady both said Rettig informed them of the IG probe after the Times report was published on Wednesday evening.
Brady said that Rettig told him he did not communicate with Trump before the audits and that they are randomly generated. Brady also said his own call for an investigation is motivated in part by earlier allegations that conservatives were targeted during former President
White House press secretary
“His term is up in November, but I don’t have any updates on that,” she said, referring to Rettig. “I’m just going to leave it at that.”
The New York Times reported that Comey was informed by the IRS in 2019 that his 2017 tax return would be subjected to an invasive audit, and McCabe was informed his 2019 tax return would receive such an audit. The Times reported that the audits are extremely rare, with just 5,000 of the special audits conducted out of the 153 million individual tax returns filed in 2017.
The Times reported that the audit of the return of Comey and his wife,
Trump indicated his 2017 decision to fire Comey was related to Comey’s work on an investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election. Comey later arranged for a leak of a memo he wrote before the firing about a private meeting with Trump, with the memo stating Trump asked him to end the FBI’s probe of
McCabe was the FBI’s deputy director from 2016 to 2018, but he was acting director in part of 2017 after Comey’s firing. He was fired by then-Attorney General
House Ways and Mean Chair
“The possibility that the former President or someone in the White House, his cabinet, his appointees, or leadership working under the Trump-appointed IRS Commissioner may have requested an audit of those deemed disloyal is alarming,” Neal wrote to Inspector General J. Russell George.
Despite the IRS’s denial that neither man was singled out, Representative
“There may be no group on the face of this earth that deserves the benefit of the doubt less than Donald Trump and his government enablers,” Pascrell, a New Jersey Democrat, said in a statement. “The IRS under Donald Trump’s handpicked commissioner Charles Rettig has been one catastrophe after another.”
--With assistance from
To contact the reporter on this story:
To contact the editors responsible for this story:
© 2022 Bloomberg L.P. All rights reserved. Used with permission.