Republicans try to link IRS scandal, health reform


WASHINGTON, D.C. — Republicans attempted to connect the Internal Revenue Service scandal to the Obama administration’s controversial health-care-reform law in a Saturday response to the president’s weekly radio-Internet address.

“Just think about the fact that it’s the IRS that will be responsible for enforcing many of these regulations. If we’ve learned anything this week, it’s that the IRS needs less power, not more,” said Rep. Andy Harris of Maryland, who delivered the Republican response.

ABC News recently reported that the IRS official who had been in charge of overseeing tax-exempt organizations, a division under fire for targeting the tea party, now leads IRS accounting for President Barack Obama’s health-care overhaul.

“You can’t make this stuff up,” said Harris, a doctor. “I’ve always believed the power in our health-care system should belong to patients and their families, not politicians — and certainly not the tax man.”

On Thursday, the Republican-led House of Representatives voted to repeal the health-care overhaul, but there’s no chance that the Democratic-led Senate will approve the bill.

In his weekly address, Obama focused on a “thriving middle class” and jobs.

“I like getting out of the Washington echo chamber whenever I can — because too often, our politics aren’t focused on the same things you are. Working hard. Supporting your family and your community. Making sure your kids have every chance in life,” Obama said.