Taxing Days Ahead for Everyone in IRS Scandal

The IRS faces a massive audit, and the cost will be paid by taxpayers.

The conference was called “lavish” and “shameless.” Could it pass an IRS audit? Here’s what experts say.

As for the partisan nature of the latest scandal, Atkinson, who spent years as a compliance officer and lawyer for the agency, sees the problem not as one of political agenda, but rather as an agency caught in the middle of a deeply divided Washington that lacks the expertise and resources to manage all of the competing interests. The IRS's "over-reliance on technology to solve human problems" and its "insular culture" are hurting the agency, she says.

"I feel sorry for the IRS. There are a lot of good people there just doing their jobs and not understanding how to do them," Atkinson says. "It's more of a mess than a conspiracy."