The Obama administration said that it is withholding all of the thousands of pages of documents related to the White House’s coordination with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) during the IRS conservative targeting scandal.
Secretary of the Treasury Jacob Lew, Obama’s former White House Chief of Staff, took the documents that were set to be released and now refuses to ever turn them over. His rationale? Lew cannot release information about improper disclosures of confidential taxpayer information because that would be an improper disclosure of confidential taxpayer information.
The Daily Caller reported that the Treasury Department’s inspector general found nearly 2,500 pages of documents that chronicle investigations into the confidential taxpayer information that the White House exchanged with the IRS. (RELATED: Thousands of Documents: IRS Gave Taxpayer Information To White House).
The documents were found pursuant to a lawsuit that the legal advocacy firm Cause of Action filed against the Treasury Department’s inspector general.
The lawyer for the inspector general, Gregory M. Miller, told Cause of Action this week in a letter that Lew seized the documents.
“All of the 2,043 pages of documents we have determined to be responsive were collected by the Secretary of the Treasury with respect to the determination of possible liability under Title 26 of the United States Code,” Miller wrote.
“These pages consist of return information protected by 26 U.S.C. § 6103 and may not be disclosed absent an express statutory exception. Because no such exception exists here, we are withholding those documents in their entirety under FOIA subsection [b] in conjunction with 26 U.S.C. §6103.”
According to the letter, there are “Department of Justice attorneys assigned to this matter.”