- (Photo: The Christian Post/Tyler O'Neil)
The Obama administration is hypocritical for claiming there is no conflict of interest with the Justice Department official put in charge of the IRS scandal involving the targeting of conservative groups, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said in a Wednesday statement. Cruz asked the DOJ to appoint a special prosecutor, but his request was denied.
"It is the height of hypocrisy for the Obama Administration to claim that the investigator leading the investigation into the IRS's illegal program has no conflict of interest. The investigator is a partisan Democrat who has donated over six thousand dollars to President Obama and Democrat causes," Cruz claimed.
Barbara Bosserman, a Justice Department trial attorney, is the highest ranking official in DOJ's investigation. In January, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee reported that Bosserman had donated nearly $7,000 to the Obama campaign and the Democratic National Committee. In some cases, the donations were the maximum allowed by law.
On Jan. 22, Cruz sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder asking him to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the scandal.
"The widespread perception of partisan bias, of manifest conflict of interest, besmirches the reputation of the Department of Justice. And it undermines confidence in rule of law. I ask you personally to demonstrate the independence that so many of your predecessors have demonstrated, and act to preserve the integrity of the Department of Justice and immediately appoint a special prosecutor, with meaningful independence, to investigate the IRS's illegal targeting of conservative groups," he wrote in part.
Peter Kadzik, principal deputy assistant to the AG, denied Cruz's request in a letter dated March 10.
" ... a special counsel may be appointed when an investigation or prosecution by the Department of Justice would present a conflict of interest, or in other extraordinary circumstances, such that the public interest would be served by such an appointment. ... such an appointment is not warranted," he wrote.
Kadzik also said that the DOJ will continue the investigation into the IRS scandal and political considerations will not play a role in that investigation.
"The Department remains committed to integrity and fairness in all of its law enforcement efforts, without regard to politics. ... Any other approach would be inconsistent with the fundamental principles to which this Department is dedicated," he added.
In his response, Cruz said that "nobody should trust a partisan Obama donor to investigate the IRS's political targeting of President Obama's enemies."
"To date, nine months after a damning Inspector General report, nobody has been indicted, many of the victims have not even been interviewed, and Lois Lerner has twice pleaded the Fifth. And yet the Attorney General refuses to allow a genuine – and impartial – investigation," he added.
In his Super Bowl Sunday interview with Fox News, President Barack Obama said there was "not even a smidgen of corruption" at the IRS. The day after that interview, an ABC reporter asked White House Press Secretary Jay Carney how the president can prejudge the outcome of an ongoing investigation.
Carney answered that the president's understanding came from the Inspector General report, congressional testimony and "20 different news organizations."
"Obviously, we do not interfere with Justice Department investigations," Carney added after being pressed further.
For a brief history of the IRS scandal, check out The Christian Post article, "A Timeline of the IRS Targeting of Conservative, Evangelical and Pro-Life Groups Scandal."