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Graham: IRS scandal not limited to Cincinnati

June 3, 2013 at 5:21 PM

WASHINGTON, June 3 (UPI) -- U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham said he doesn't believe the Internal Revenue Service targeting of conservative groups was limited to a single branch in Cincinnati.

Graham, a top Republican in the Senate who faces re-election in South Carolina next year, appeared on Fox News Monday and was asked how he thinks the IRS investigation should proceed.

"To get to the truth, is the best thing for the country," Graham said. "I don't think this was a localized problem in Cincinnati. I think the conservative Tea Party groups were intentionally targeted as critics of the administration, and that people used the power the IRS gave them over these groups to silence one group and let the other group flourish, and that is bad for democracy."

Graham also pushed back on Democrats' claims that Republicans are trying to turn the IRS scandal into a political problem for the Obama administration.

Graham said he doesn't now if it reaches the White House. "But I do know this -- that if a Bush administration official in charge of regulating 501(c)(4) groups was accused of silencing liberal groups, and she took the Fifth Amendment, we would not be asking, are the Democrats going too far by trying to ask more questions?" he said.

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