Obama appoints OMB official Danny Werfel to head up IRS

Rachel Rose Hartman
The Ticket

President Barack Obama on Thursday appointed Danny Werfel, an official with the Office of Management and Budget, as acting commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service. Werfel replaces Steven Miller, the acting commissioner forced to resign on Wednesday over the IRS having targeted conservative groups for special scrutiny.

Werfel, whose appointment will be effective May 22, "will lead efforts to ensure the IRS implements new safeguards to restore public trust and administers the tax code with fairness and integrity," the White House said in a statement. He will serve through the end of the fiscal year.

“Throughout his career working in both Democratic and Republican administrations, Danny has proven an effective leader who serves with professionalism, integrity and skill," Obama added in the statement. "The American people deserve to have the utmost confidence and trust in their government, and as we work to get to the bottom of what happened and restore confidence in the IRS, Danny has the experience and management ability necessary to lead the agency at this important time."

Werfel has been serving as the administration's point person on the sequester.

Obama announced on Wednesday night that Miller was asked to resign after the revelations that IRS employees targeted conservative-sounding groups applying for tax-exempt status. And the president added at a press conference earlier on Thursday that a replacement was imminent.

"We will be putting in new leadership that will be able to make sure that—following up on the IG audit—that we gather up all the facts, that we hold accountable those who have taken these outrageous actions," Obama said at a Rose Garden press conference with the prime minister of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. "As I said last night, it is just simply unacceptable for there to even be a hint of partisanship or ideology when it comes to the application of our tax laws."