South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley was never the subject of an Internal Revenue Service investigation into a worship center her family helps run, according to a letter released by the agency Friday.
Haley’s office says the letter is proof that the “totally contrived” rumors that spread across the Internet this week that Haley could be indicted in federal court over the issue are “totally false.”
“As we said from the very beginning, there was not an ounce of truth to any of these accusations — they were totally contrived, totally false, and and unaccountable bloggers,” said Rob Godfrey, a spokesman for Haley.
After outlets — including The Daily Caller — reported on the indictment rumors that surfaced on a South Carolina blog this week, Godfrey told TheDC that there’s “no truth to this whatsoever — it’s as real as the tooth fairy.”
The rumors started when the IRS in March 2011 sent a letter to the Sikh Religious Society of South Carolina, informing them that they would audit the organization. Haley has said she’s never been involved with the society, unlike her parents.
The issue was resolved in September or October 2011, when it was “determined an examination [was] not warranted,” according to the letter.
The letter was released after The Palmetto Public Record, a South Carolina political blog, reported this week that Haley could be indicted in a federal investigation soon over the issue.
In an interview with TheDC on Friday, Tim Pearson, Haley’s chief of staff, elaborated by saying the indictment rumors can’t be true because federal authorities haven’t contacted Haley about an investigation. He also told TheDC that Haley has not received any sort of target letter that would be typical of such a federal investigation.
“No one has asked to sit down with her and interview her,” Pearson continued. “There’s been no contact because the investigation doesn’t exist. You can’t have an indictment without an investigation. So all of this stuff is just totally false.”