Lois Lerner changes mind; agrees to testify on IRS scandal

The woman at the center of last year’s IRS scandal has agreed to testify before Congress on Wednesday, U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa told Fox News Sunday.

Many believe Lois Lerner, the former director of the IRS’s department for tax-exempt organizations, is responsible for the agency’s decision to target the tea party and other conservative groups seeking nonprofit status.

Lerner lit a firestorm last spring when she admitted that her agency had improperly put Republican-oriented groups under the microscope. Then, in her only appearance before Issa’s House Oversight Committee, she insisted she had done nothing wrong, then invoked the Fifth Amendment and refused to testify.

“It’s going to be a good, fact-finding hearing,” Issa, a California Republican, told Fox News, adding that it was in Lerner’s “best interest” to come forward, especially given evidence gathered since the scandal erupted.

Under immense bipartisan pressure, Lerner resigned her IRS position last year. But many believe the White House knew delay tactics were being employed on nonprofit-status applications to frustrate anti-Obama tea party supporters. Wednesday’s testimony could even bring more bombshells.

UPDATE 3/2: From The Hill:

An attorney for Lois Lerner said Sunday the former IRS official has not waived her right to refuse to testify before the House oversight committee, disputing an assertion that that panel’s chairman, Rep. Darrell Issa, made on television earlier in the day.

 

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