Posted: May 21, 2013 7:48 PM by Melissa Anderson, Marnee Banks
Updated: May 21, 2013 7:49 PM
HELENA - Outraged over the recent IRS scrutiny of conservative groups, members of the Big Sky Tea Party protested in Helena on Tuesday afternoon claiming that they too were the target of intrusive actions by the IRS.
About a dozen protesters were picketing along Last Chance Gulch and outside the IRS office calling for accountability.
Big Sky Tea Party President Ed Argenbright says the IRS sent his organization a letter inquiring about their members and donors.
"They target us, they identify us and then they work to demean and criticize and intimidate," Argenbright said.
Big Sky Tea Party member Roger Nummerdor was one of the protesters holding a handprinted sign.
"For years we've bee vilified and now we're being proven that we were correct in the government doing things that they shouldn't," Nummerdor said.
U.S. Senator Max Baucus (D-MT) is also outraged by the actions of the IRS and is calling for an investigation.
As chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, Baucus held a special hearing where he questioned acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller and former IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman.
This comes just a week after the Inspector General released a report which showed the IRS was unfairly targeting conservative groups who were applying for tax exempt status.
Baucus is calling for changes in tax policy to prevent these types of actions from happening again.
"The American people have every right to be outraged. Targeting groups based on their political views is not only inappropriate, it is intolerable," Baucus said.
Baucus has sent a formal letter to Commissioner Miller asking him to answer 41 questions about the scope of the IRS's actions.