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Attorney General Holder Says IRS Investigation Doesn’t Warrant Special Prosecutor

Denies current investigator has any conflict of interest despite being a major Obama donor

January 29, 2014

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(202) 228-7561

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, in today’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, repeated questions he asked in a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder last week related to the IRS investigation – specifically whether the naming of a major Obama donor to lead the investigation into IRS's illegal targeting of conservatives is a conflict of interest.

In an exchange with Sen. Cruz at the 9:41 mark, Attorney General Holder says the IRS investigation does not warrant the appointment of a special prosecutor.

Sen. Cruz asks Attorney General Holder, “I would call upon you to carry out the tradition of independence that attorneys general have honored that office with for centuries and protect the integrity of the Department of Justice, given the political sensitivities, given the fact that individual citizens believe they are being persecuted by the Department of Justice for partisan reasons. It would further Justice and further the integrity of the Department of Justice for you to appoint a special prosecutor with a meaningful degree of independence to investigate and find out what happened, and I would suggest that any special prosecutor should have integrity beyond reproach, and not be a major Obama donor.”

General Holder responded, “I don’t think that there is a basis for us to conclude on the information as it presently exists that there is any reason for the appointment of the independent counsel…The notion that somehow this has caused a loss of faith in this Justice Department is inconsistent with the facts.”

Additionally, earlier in the hearing, at the 5:10 mark, Attorney General Holder denied he had any reason to believe the IRS investigation is conflicted, saying, “I don't have any basis to believe that the people who engaged in this investigation are doing so in a way other than investigations are normally done. That is by looking at the facts, applying the law to those facts, and reaching the appropriate conclusion. I don't have any basis to believe anything other than that is occurring.”

Sen. Cruz responded, “I would say a lot of American citizens have a basis to believe it, given 282 days have passed and no on has been indicted, 280 days have passed and many, if not all, of the victims have not even been interviewed. 280 days have passed and apparently the anger and outrage that both the President and you expressed has utterly disappeared. Indeed, in last night's State of the Union address the President did not so much as mention the word 'IRS.' So the anger and outrage sees very little manifestation in actual action."

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