U.S. Senate approves John Koskinen to lead IRS

Dec. 21, 2013 at 12:04 PM

WASHINGTON, Dec. 21 (UPI) -- The United States had a new top tax collector this weekend following Friday's confirmation vote in the U.S. Senate.

John Koskinen, 74, was approved on a 59-36 vote Friday and will take over the leadership of the Internal Revenue Service from interim commissioner Danny Werfel.

Koskinen was confirmed largely along party lines with five Republican senators voting yes, The Hill said.

Koskinen, a former top executive with the mortgage agency Freddie Mac, takes over the IRS at a time when the agency has been busy preparing for the arrival of President Obama's new healthcare program and also wrestling with allegations it improperly gave too much scrutiny to conservative political groups seeking tax-exempt status.

"In every area of the IRS, taxpayers need to be confident they will be treated fairly, no matter what their background or affiliations," Koskinen said in a written statement. "Public trust is the IRS's most important and valuable asset."

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