Clinton Foundation Caught in IRS Crosshairs

The Internal Revenue Service is investigating claims of ‘pay-to-play’ practices at the Clinton Foundation.  Former prosecutor Katie Phang says an investigation such as this is usually serious but maybe not in this case.

“Well, actually, normally I would say it’s pretty serious but we’ve seen with the whole Lois Lerner kind of email situation maybe it’s not going to be that heavy,” said Phang adding that the IRS should be as tough on the foundation as it would be with any other group.

“Is the IRS really standing for the ‘Ineffective Review Service’ and not the Internal Revenue Service?  Is the tax exempt investigation that’s going to occur on the Clinton Foundation really going to reveal anything?  Well, it should,” Phang told the FOX Business Network’s Ashley Webster.

Rep. Martha Blackburn (R-Tenn) has been leading a year-long push to investigate the Clinton Foundation’s use of funds which includes letters sent to the IRS and the FTC.

At the Republican National Convention she told that the Clinton Foundation gives about 15% of its donations to its missions far below the 50%-75%, other charities commit. Despite her allegations she said, "Interestingly enough what we heard back from them (FTC) was it was not a sham charity."

As for the tax code covering non-profit organizations such as the Clinton Foundation, Phang insists it is black-and white.

“It’s [The IRS tax code] very strict when it comes to private foundations because it’s exactly what it sounds like, you get exempt from taxation for hundreds of millions of dollars if not billions of dollars that are flowing through these organizations.  If you do not maintain properly your 501c3 status which is exactly the kind of organization the Clinton Foundation is, you get scrutiny by the IRS.”

Despite the strict tax codes covering tax exempt status, Phang was skeptical anything would come of the investigation.

“But is [IRS Commissioner] John Koskinen really going to look into the Clinton Foundation?  It seems a little quid pro quo these days in terms of how the Clintons work with other people, so I’m not sure my confidence level is that high.”

Conservative lawmakers are calling for Koskinen to be impeached for the way the IRS allegedly handled politically active nonprofits.