Press Release: U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, today sent the following letter to Attorney General Eric Holder asking that he reconsider appointing a special prosecutor to investigate the illegal targeting program conducted by staff at the Internal Revenue Service in direct communication with the Department of Justice.
Sen. Cruz first requested that a special prosecutor be appointed to the case on January 22, 2014. On March 10, 2014, Attorney General Holder declined to do so. Now, in light of credible evidence that has surfaced indicating that the Department of Justice may have been involved in that illegal program, Sen. Cruz is asking Attorney General Holder to revisit appointing a special prosecutor with the independence and objectivity to fairly investigate the matter.
In his letter Sen. Cruz wrote:
On January 29, 2014, just one week after I asked you to appoint a special prosecutor, you testified to the Senate Judiciary Committee that there was a significant “ongoing investigation” into the IRS’s illegal targeting:
“This is a matter that is presently being investigated, interviews are being done, analysis is being conducted.”
“I have faith in the career people who are handling this matter, to do so in a way that is free of any kind of partisan or ideological tint and to come to an assessment of the facts and law based only on the facts and on the law.”
But just four days later, President Obama went on national television and stated categorically that there was “not even a smidgen of corruption” regarding the IRS targeting.
These statements are facially inconsistent. If there was a significant “ongoing investigation,” then the President’s statement was without factual basis.
Was President Obama mistaken when he stated unequivocally on national television that there was “not even a smidgen of corruption” at the IRS?
Alternatively, if President Obama was correct, was your Judiciary Committee testimony materially false, when you said the “ongoing investigation” was “free of any kind of partisan or ideological tint and to come to an assessment of the facts and law based only on the facts and on the law”?
And in light of the new evidence of potential DOJ involvement in the illegal conduct—and public White House direction as to the desired outcome of any investigation—have you reconsidered appointing a special counsel in this matter?
The full letter is available here (PDF).