U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock (R-Peoria) says a potential investigation into the targeting of conservative groups by the Internal Revenue Service would be limited to one official for now.
The House Ways and Means Committee voted along party lines to ask the U.S. Department of Justice to prosecute Lois Lerner, who is accused of violating the civil rights of Tea Party groups that sought tax-exempt status.
Schock says their investigation is focused on Lerner. “There have some who have made charges against the White House, some have made charges against the president—this isn’t any of that,” Schock said.
But Schock did make mention of U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), who had called for the IRS to look into the tax-exempt application of a group called Crossroads GPS.
“She (Lerner) got a letter from Sen. Dick Durbin to her, specifically, at the beginning of that time period, urging her to launch a special investigation into Crossroads specifically,” Schock said.
Schock was mistaken; that letter was actually addressed to former IRS Commissioner Doug Schulman, not Lerner. Durbin’s office said the senator never contacted Lerner.
A spokesman for Schock said the congressman was not implying any wrongdoing by Durbin.
The House Oversight Committee voted Thursday afternoon to hold Lerner in contempt of Congress.