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MSNBC skewers Obama over IRS scandal

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It’s little surprise to see Republicans bashing the Obama administration over reports that the Internal Revenue Service targeted conservative groups during the 2012 election season.

But even the president’s most vocal supporters — the talking heads of liberal cable news channel MSNBC — are unloading on the White House and the Democratic Party as a whole.

“Look at the reaction of the entire Democratic Party. Of course the Republican Party is jumping on this … beating up the IRS is always good politics. But why aren’t more Democrats jumping on this?” asked MSNBC host and White House correspondent Chuck Todd. “This is outrageous, no matter what political party you are.”

Former NBC News anchor Tom Brokaw also skewered the administration’s response to the scandal, which broke Friday afternoon.

“There’s only spin for the president to make, which is to come out and say that ‘this is outrageous. I have asked the people responsible for this to be removed from their jobs.’” Mr. Brokaw said on “Morning Joe” on Monday morning.

Mr. Obama has yet to directly address the matter, though he’s expected to do so Monday.

The IRS admitted on Friday that some auditors gave extra scrutiny to applications for tax-exempt status from tea party groups and other conservative outfits, including Glenn Beck’s 9/12 Project, according to media reports.

As the scandal deepens, figures from within the Democratic Party are calling on Mr. Obama to address the situation head on.

“He’s got to come out and really hammer this, hammer it loud and clear,” said former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell, an MSNBC analyst, on “Morning Joe.”

“Action has to be taken. As strongly as possible, [Mr. Obama has to] get out there and condemn it. … It’s pretty sad,” he added.

The IRS ordeal comes just as the ongoing scandal over the administration’s handling of the 2012 Benghazi terror attacks continues to heat up. Some analysts, however, believe the IRS actions could end up being worse.

“I think this story has more legs politically in 2014 than Benghazi,” Mr. Todd said.

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About the Author
Ben Wolfgang

Ben Wolfgang

Ben Wolfgang covers the White House for The Washington Times.

Before joining the Times in March 2011, Ben spent four years as a political reporter at the Republican-Herald in Pottsville, Pa.

He can be reached at bwolfgang@washingtontimes.com.

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