WASHINGTON – A Democratic congressman has released the full transcript of congressional investigators' interview with an Internal Revenue Service manager and self-described conservative Republican who said the close scrutiny of tea party groups' tax forms originated in his Cincinnati IRS office, not in Washington.
John Shafer oversaw a group of IRS workers who screen applications for tax-exempt status. He said he was unaware of any involvement by the White House in decisions to screen tea party groups.
Shafer said that in February 2010, his group sent its first tea party application to higher-ranking supervisors because media attention such groups were getting seemed likely to make their treatment a high-profile case.
Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings released the transcript. He had released excerpts from Shafer's interview earlier this month.