Many in California have been subjected to scrutiny from the IRS. Well, this time, it's the IRS that's being investigated. The U.S. Attorney General instructed the FBI to begin an investigation into how the IRS has dealt with certain political groups that are considered to be conservative.
The investigation was ordered in the wake of an IRS admission that it has been using "inappropriate criteria" to target advocacy groups such as the Tea Party. These groups claim they have been denied tax exempt status and that the IRS has not been equitable in its dealing with these conservative groups. It has reached the point where members of Congress are asking for the resignation of the acting chief of the IRS, Steven Miller.
The Obama administration was counting on the IRS to be able to oversee the implementation of certain tax regulations that are connected to the reform of our country's healthcare system. However, if the agency can't be seen as bipartisan and impartial, that task is going to be difficult. Many people are unsure as to how any criminal charges will be filed, but the investigation is ongoing.
It is believed that this discrimination against certain political groups has been going on for at least three years. Any group that believes they have been denied a tax exempt status or that they were not treated fairly by the IRS when applying for tax exempt status may find it beneficial to file a complaint with the IRS. It is possible that there are several groups here in California that were denied this status based on someone else's political agenda.
Source: Reuters, "FBI opens criminal probe of tax agency, audit cites disarray," David Ingram and Matt Spetalnick, May 15, 2013