Senators disagree on whether IRS treated conservative groups worse than liberal ones

Government And Institutions Associated Press

After investigating the IRS for more than a year, two key senators — a Democrat and a Republican — disagree on whether the tax agency treated conservative groups worse than their liberal counterparts when they applied for tax-exempt status.

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The Senate's subcommittee on investigations released competing reports Friday on how the IRS handled applications from political groups during the 2010 and 2012 elections.

The Democratic report, released by Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan, said both liberal and conservative groups were mistreated, revealing no political bias by the IRS.

The Republican report, issued by Sen. John McCain of Arizona, said conservative groups were clearly treated worse.

The IRS inspector general set off a firestorm last year with a report that said IRS agents singled out conservative groups for inappropriate scrutiny.