A pair of Republican lawmakers told The New York Times in a story published Thursday that the Internal Revenue Service scandal that rocked the agency may not have been politically motivated as previously thought.
The Times detailed how the agency’s scrutiny of organizations that applied for tax-exempt status was more complicated than it originally seemed, building on previous reports showing that the IRS didn’t just single out conservative and tea party groups.
Rep. Charles Boustany Jr. (R-LA) said that Republicans still “haven’t proved political motivation” behind the agency’s scrutiny.
Meanwhile, Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO) told the newspaper that, in hindsight, it seems unlikely that President Barack Obama used the IRS to go after his political enemies.
“Presidents have always been very careful about maintaining the appearance of keeping hands off the I.R.S.,” Blunt said. “I don’t have any reason to believe there wasn’t targeting of conservatives, but it might well have been a lot more than that as well.”
This post has been updated.