A Republican senator is citing revelations that the IRS targeted conservative political groups in a bid to block President Obama’s request for funding at the agency to implement his health care law.
Citing the developing scandal, Nevada Sen. Dean Heller said Tuesday he will introduce legislation this week “to suspend IRS funding for new agents enforcing the health care law until Congress sees an improvement.”
The IRS is responsible for overseeing crucial aspects of the Affordable Care Act, which imposes a tax penalty on Americans who can afford health insurance but choose not to acquire it. The law also provides tax credits to people without employer-based health plans, so they can buy coverage on state-based insurance markets.
Republican lawmakers have been fiercely critical of Mr. Obama’s law since it passed in 2010. They have dialed up their opposition in recent months, since key pillars of the law are set to take effect in 2014.
The IRS’s admission on Friday that it targeted tea party groups and other political organizations is adding fuel to the fire.
“I feel it is necessary that both Congress and the Department of Health and Human Services look closely at the money given to the IRS through the health care law,” Mr. Heller said in a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “I write to you to express my strong opposition for any additional money for new agents in IRS, and hope that we may conduct extensive oversight into the program.”