Civil Liberties

Inappropriate IRS Targeting was Widespread, Says Acting Chief

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WASHINGTON—Internal Revenue Service agents in Cincinnati used additional "inappropriate" lists to flag certain tax-exempt applications for extra scrutiny, IRS Principal Deputy Commissioner Danny Werfel told reporters Monday.

The IRS has previously acknowledged that the Cincinnati field office, which reviews all tax-exempt applications, used a "be on the lookout" list—or BOLO list—that included words like "tea party" and "patriot" to determine which groups should be subject to heightened scrutiny.

But Werfel said Monday that an internal IRS probe has turned up other, similar lists, that were in use by tax-exempt screeners when he took over as IRS chief at the end of May.