ICYMI: VIDEO AND TRANSCRIPT: Senator Scott Discusses IRS Recent Data Breach with Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren
Washington – Last night, U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-SC), a member of the Senate Finance Committee, joined Greta Van Susteren on Fox News to discuss the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) recent data breach which exposed the personal information of more than 100,000 taxpayers and the agency’s continued pattern of negligence. His full interview is availableHERE.
Full Transcript: Senator Scott Interview with FOX News’ Greta Van Susteren on “On the Record w/ Greta Van Susteren” (June 3, 2015)
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN:One of the Senators at the hearing today, Senator Tim Scott joins us. Thank you for joining us, sir. An unbelievable amount of data in the hands of criminals, that’s what the Commissioner says.
SENATOR TIM SCOTT: Stolen data, a 104,000 just this year on that one program. Unfortunately, last year, around 3 million Americans suffered identity theft through the IRS, so what we are talking about Greta is an agency that gets more than $1 billion a year for I.T., cannot figure out how to keep our information secure.
VAN SUSTEREN: Well they blame you guys for cutting their budget.
SCOTT: Here is the interesting thing. We have the Treasury Inspector [General] there. He simply said — I asked the question, what is the cause of the problem and he said since 2008, they have made recommendations that are management decisions, administrative fixes that have not been done by the IRS, since 2008.
VAN SUSTEREN: Why? Why would someone — if someone comes up with a good idea in the IRS, why isn’t someone acting? I’m assuming they are good ideas. It couldn’t be worse than what we have with the 100,000 hacked.
SCOTT: Nineteen recommendations made. Fewer than eight of them implemented. And not all eight were implemented fully. These are the words from Mr. George, the Inspector General. So there are challenges.
VAN SUSTEREN: So what does the Commissioner say, just sitting there, when he hears the Inspector General say these 19 recommendations that we made since 2008, you haven’t done them?
SCOTT: He didn’t disagree. Here’s my question, here’s my follow up question.
VAN SUSTEREN: He hasn’t been there the whole time, I might add.
SCOTT: No he wasn’t there. My follow question was simply, sir, are these administrative and management challenges or is these resource challenges? The Inspector General said these are management challenges, and Mr. Koskinen said, nothing.
VAN SUSTEREN: Is there no way to sort of clean house and get rid of these managers who aren’t doing anything.
SCOTT: It helps who is at 1600 [Pennsylvania], it helps a lot.
VAN SUSTEREN: Why do you that?
SCOTT: Well because frankly, at the end of the day, the President is the CEO of this country, and that means that he helps to appoint bureaucracy that he oversees, it is his responsibility in large part to make sure the folks that work for him are consistent.
VAN SUSTEREN: Are the people there who aren’t doing these changes at the IRS, are they presidential appointments or they civil service?
SCOTT: Civil service, without any question.
VAN SUSTEREN: So probably preceded President Obama.
SCOTT: They preceded the challenges, certainly some have preceded the President, they go as far back as 1997. But the current situation we have with over $5 billion paid out fraudulently, those go back to just 2011, 2012, and 2013. So what we are seeing here is a consistent pattern in the wrong direction. So someone has to say the buck stops here. The good news is the Senate will hold oversight hearings and will consistently keep the fire at their feet so that we have an ability and the opportunity to make sure that rein them in as much as possible. But this is not the beginning, Lois Lerner e-mails, you think about the targeting conservative groups. This is a pattern that we should be concerned about.
VAN SUSTEREN: This is terrible, this is terrible. You know it is cruel to the American people who end up having to pay for this and suffer.
SCOTT: I would say it is the agency of intimidation.
VAN SUSTEREN: Indeed, Senator, nice to see you.
SCOTT: Thank you.