“If in fact IRS personnel engaged in the kind of practices that have been reported on and were intentionally targeting conservative groups, then that’s outrageous. And there’s no place for it,” Obama told reporters.
“And they have to be held fully accountable. Because the IRS as an independent agency requires absolute integrity, and people have to have confidence that they’re … applying the laws in a nonpartisan way.”
The IRS also applied extra scrutiny to applicants with statements that “criticize how the country is run” or that sought to educate the public on how to “make America a better place to live,” designations that would have included conservative political groups looking to apply for 501(c)(4) status. Those disclosures are included in the appendix of an inspector general’s report, obtained by CNN, that has caused widespread anger among lawmakers on both sides of the aisle as well as conservative groups.
The decades-long ritual also presents a chance for a president to charm the media and the nation.
And President Barack Obama did not abandon the tradition at Saturday night’s dinner. But he delivered both praise and criticism of the media’s response to the terrorist attacks in Boston and the explosion at a fertilizer plant in Texas.
Addressing journalists and Hollywood elites in attendance alongside comedian Conan O’Brien, the president praised not just law enforcement in Boston and responders in the Texas explosion, but also print and broadcast reporters who took the time to get the story right. FULL ARTICLE