Top IRS Official to Plead the Fifth Amendment Rather than Testify About Targeting of Conservatives

Wed May 22, 2013 AT 11:09 AM EDT

Embattled IRS official Lois Lerner will invoke her Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate herself when she appears before the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday, the  Los Angeles Times is reporting. According to Politico, in a letter to Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa, Lerner’s attorney, William W. Taylor III, cites the Justice Department’s criminal investigation into the issue of whether the IRS singled out tea party and other conservative groups for extra scrutiny.

Turns out strict scrutiny for less-than-liberal outfits is hardly news. An IRS review of the agency’s approach of scrutinizing conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status questioned the now-controversial policy a year ago, according to House Oversight and Government Reform Committee spokesman Ali Ahmad, reports the Washington Post.

Meanwhile, Republicans are howling for President Obama to name a special prosecutor to investigate the IRS’ targeting of Tea Party groups. Read why The New York Times thinks Obama should call their bluff here.  Finally, Politico discusses how the IRS broke virtually every public relations rule on the books.

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