Lois Lerner, a key official in the IRS’s tea party controversy, resigned Monday morning as an internal-review board was preparing to call for her removal on the basis of “neglect of duties,” according to congressional aides from the House Ways and Means Committee.
It is unclear whether Lerner will is eligible for a federal pension and other federal-retiree benefits. The IRS, which described her departure as a “retirement,” said it could not comment further on the matter due to federal privacy rules, and her attorney did not immediately respond to requests for comment Monday.
IRS leadership placed Lerner on administrative leave in late-May, after an inspector general’s audit found that the agency had inappropriately applied extra scrutiny to tax-exemption applicants based on their political leanings.
Lerner, who was a top manager with the IRS’s exempt-organizations division, invoked her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination rather than testifying before a congressional panel in May. She first insisted at the hearing that she had done nothing wrong.
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