When will Jeffrey Zients return from South Africa?
Daily Caller – Patrick Howley – 7/23/2013
Amid new revelations about the IRS targeting scandal, the Obama administration’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB) said Tuesday that former OMB head Jeffrey Zients’ extended absence from the United States is due to a
OMB’s former leader Jeffrey Zients met at the White House with key figures at the Internal Revenue Service just before news broke that the IRS was targeting conservative nonprofit groups for abusive audits and delays.
Zients has still not returned from an overseas trip that began after his departure from the Obama administration in April, two weeks before the IRS scandal broke.
As The Daily Caller reported, Zients met with then-IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman and Shulman’s political aide Jonathan Davis and spokesman Frank Keith at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building at the White House complex on April 24, 2012.
Only Zients, who was in charge of OMB at the time, and the three men from the IRS attended the meeting, according to White House visitor logs. Their appointment ended more than eight hours after it began, according to the logs.
The next day, April 25, the IRS’s chief counsel’s office — led by William Wilkins, who met with Obama at the White House that same week — sent Washington-based IRS officials “additional comments on the draft guidance.” These guidelines covered approving or denying tea party tax-exempt , according to a report on the IRS scandal compiled by Treasury Inspector General J. Russell George.
It remains unclear why Shulman’s political and press aides were present at the meeting.
After a Senate vote confirming his successor — Sylvia Mathews Burwell — Zients left his post at OMB on April 24, 2013.
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