Werfel Won't Answer if Obama Ordered Him to 'Clear House' at IRS

Werfel Won't Answer if Obama Ordered Him to 'Clear House' at IRS

On Monday, acting IRS Commissioner Daniel Werfel refused to answer if President Barack Obama specifically ordered him to “clean house” when the two met on May 16th and fire IRS agents responsible for targeting Tea Party and conservative groups. 

During testimony before a House Appropriations Subcommittee on Monday, Werfel said he spoke to Obama on May 16th for 20 minutes and Obama ordered him to merely do an “accountability review.” 

When Rep. Tom Graves (R-GA) asked him if Obama ordered him to “clean house,” Werfel would not answer the question directly. Graves noted that the resignation of employees is not necessarily the same as IRS agents being fired and held accountable for their actions. 

Graves pointed to Lois Lerner, the head of the tax-exempt division who is now on administrative leave but is still being paid. 

“Is that your definition of accountability?” Graves asked Werfel. 

Werfel answered that there were two stages to accountability: determining the facts surrounding the situation and then determining if there was “underlying malfeasance” that would require agents to be fired.