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What Taxpayers Deserve to Know in IRS Controversy

The controversy now unfolding at the Internal Revenue Service -- that it targeted for rejection the nonprofit status of the Tea Party and other conservative groups that raised concerns about "government spending, government debt or taxes" as early as 2011 -- raises again the problematic oversight at the agency of a nonprofit sector that now is about the size of India.Tax laws covering nonprofit activities, and what the IRS is allowed to do, are notoriously murky. But the IRS appears to have seriously crossed the line (see bottom for the roadmap of questions to ask).Both sides of the political aisle have been under the gun at the IRS for pushing the envelope of the law. Since the 1930s, nonprofits have abused the law and lived off the taxpayers' nickel by hiding in the shadowy corners of a shambolic U.S. tax system.But the IRS has an ugly history of conducting political audits and unfairly attacking individuals and nonprofits at the behest of politicians -- a history that involves the F...

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