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Emails: IRS official sought audit of GOP senator

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POSTED June 25, 2014 9:33 p.m.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressional investigators say they uncovered emails Wednesday showing that a former Internal Revenue Service official at the heart of the tea party investigation sought an audit involving a Republican senator in 2012.

The emails show former IRS official Lois Lerner mistakenly received an invitation to an event that was meant to go to Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa.

The event organizer apparently offered to pay for Grassley’s wife to attend the event. In an email to another IRS official, Lerner suggests referring the matter for an audit, saying it might be inappropriate for the group to pay for his wife. “Perhaps we should refer to exam?” Lerner wrote.

It was unclear from the emails whether Lerner was suggesting that Grassley or the group be audited — or both. The other IRS official, Matthew Giuliano, waved her off, saying an audit would be premature because Grassley hadn’t even accepted the invitation. “It would be Grassley who would need to report the income,” Giuliano said. 

The name of the event organizer was blacked out on copies of the emails released by the House Ways and Means Committee because they were considered confidential taxpayer information. 

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