Even before people rallied at the state Capitol last week to protest the targeting of conservative groups by the Internal Revenue Service, U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson took those frustrations to Washington.
During a meeting of the Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday, the Georgia senator demanded answers from former IRS Commissioners Steven Miller and Douglas Shulman.
"I've heard from Georgians from across the state that they have lost all confidence in the IRS and in the federal government. We need to get to the bottom of what happened at the IRS and find out who knew what, where and when, so that we can restore the American people's confidence in the IRS," Isakson said. "The audit clearly shows that there was major wrongdoing at the IRS, and I strongly believe that there should be an internal investigation conducted at the IRS so that the corrupt culture of targeting individuals never happens again."
Isakson also called for testimony from Sarah Ingram, who once oversaw the division at the IRS that processes tax-exempt applications and has now been promoted to head the implementation of Obamacare.
Last week, Isakson co-sponsored two pieces of legislation in response to the IRS targeting conservative political groups for additional screening, and he joined his Republican colleagues in sending a letter to President Obama demanding full compliance with congressional investigation requests for information on how the IRS targeted conservative groups.
Two local state senators got top rankings from the Georgia Chamber of Commerce on legislative scorecards released last week.
Senate President Pro Tempore David Shafer, R-Duluth, and Sen. Renee Unterman, R-Buford, received A+ ratings on the scorecard, which recognizes legislators that support business initiatives.
"It is an honor to be recognized by the Georgia Chamber of Commerce," Shafer said. "I will continue to do everything in my power to pass common sense, pro-business laws that encourage growth and job creation in the private sector."
Unterman also said she was honored by the rating.
"I will continue to work diligently to provide Georgia with free market solutions that drive down the cost of doing business and allows Georgia to remain a competitive place for future business growth and development," she said.
The ratings dealt with a number of issues important to the business community, including education, economic development, business and industry and judiciary reform, a press release said.
"What is clear from this year's scorecard is that lawmakers -- both Democrat and Republican -- are taking private-sector growth seriously. They realize how important these issues are to the state and to their constituents and that we must take action to encourage investment and job creation," Georgia Chamber President and CEO Chris Clark said. "We are proud that there was such broad-based, bipartisan support for each of the scorecard bills. As a result, we will improve Georgia's overall competitiveness and reputation as a state that is open for business. We commend Sen. Shafer for his dedication and commitment to the betterment of our state."
Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.
Camie Young can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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