Friday, February 8, 2013
With so many Americans fighting to stay afloat economically, one might think the Obama administration would be inclined to support, not thwart, the work charities perform. But consider this startling finding from the Government Accountability Institute: under Mr. Obama, IRS audits for tax-exempt organizations have jumped 79% over what they were under President George W. Bush.
According to IRS data, the IRS audited an average of 6,205 returns of tax-exempt organizations per year from 2001 to 2008. From 2009 to 2011, however, the number of audited returns spiked to an average of 11,111 per year....
Whatever the White House's motivation for honing in on tax-exempt organizations, boosting IRS audit rates of charities by 79% at a time when they are already struggling to secure scarce resources to serve their missions seems, at minimum, a gross misallocation of time, energy, and taxpayer dollars. At worst, it is further evidence of a White House determined to flex its political muscle to keep organizations dependent and fearful. Either way, it needs to stop.