Rep. Gowdy Fights Back Tears as He Dresses Down IRS Official Responsible for Lavish Conferences

Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) during Thursday’s House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on the IRS’ lavish employee conferences had a powerful message for agency officials: Start over.

“In the very same month, in the very same year, that the IRS was conferencing in Anaheim, we were furloughing law enforcement officers,” the South Carolina representative said in reference to his constituents. “We were furloughing teachers.”

The former prosecutor went on to recount how he and those around him in his state dealt with hard times: They brought their own food to work social events and they cancelled all out-of-town trips. Rep. Gowdy even mentioned the time he loaned money to one of his employees because she couldn’t afford to buy her son a birthday present.

Meanwhile, while Gowdy and his colleagues coped with economic hardships, the IRS was spending millions of taxpayer dollars on plush an extravagant employee conferences.

“This is not a training issue,” Rep. Gowdy continued, addressing Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration J. Russell George. “This cannot be solved with another webinar and this can’t be solved with ‘just one more recommendation.””

“It just strikes me we need one single recommendation,” a visibly emotional and angry Gowdy concluded. “Start over.”

Here are his remarks in full:


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Featured image flickr. This post has been updated.