“They need to be terminated, they need to be disciplined. The American people need to know that the people involved in this are held accountable,” said Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder and CEO of the organization, one of many conservative outfits subjected to extra IRS scrutiny based solely on its political bent.
During an appearance on C-Span’s “Washington Journal” program, Ms. Martin said that acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller and Lois Lerner, who heads the agency’s tax-exempt unit, need to be removed from their jobs to set an example.
President Obama briefly addressed the controversy on Monday, but no disciplinary action has yet been taken.
“The IRS and these unelected bureaucrats who are supposed to be public servants … abused their power, they abused their authority,” she said. “When you abuse your authority and you abuse your power, the people in the country quit trusting you. They brought this on themselves.”
Despite filing its applications for tax-exempt status in 2010, Tea Party Patriots has yet to receive a decision from the IRS, Ms. Martin said. The delay apparently stems from administration policy that the group and similar conservative organizations be subjected to a much more thorough review process than usual.
That discrimination, Ms. Martin said, is reason for “legal action,” though she didn’t discuss the specifics of any lawsuits under consideration.
“We’re talking to our counsel right now reviewing the costs we have incurred … determining how much damages we’ve suffered because of the delaying tactics and discrimination from the IRS,” she said. “We’re looking at all legal options. At this point we intend to press forward with legal action.”