Internal Revenue Service Commissioner John Koskinen admitted to making false statements while testifying under oath to a congressional committee Wednesday.
During his opening remarks in a House Judiciary Committee hearing where he was the sole witness, Koskinen acknowledged previous statements of his were indeed false:
“From the start, I directed IRS staff to cooperate fully with Congress and to recover lost information where possible, and I testified to the best of my knowledge. But the truth is that we did not succeed in preserving all of the information requested and some of my testimony later proved mistaken.”
However, Koskinen maintained that his false statements were the product of merely being mistaken and not a direct attempt to mislead.
While being probed by Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) on his 2014 testimony in which he claimed “every email has been preserved,” Koskinen said:
“The statement I thought was true, it was not true on the basis of the evidence that we discovered later.”
Jordan, who has been one of the most prominent advocates in the effort to impeach the chief tax collector, called Koskinen’s response a “double standard.”
“[The IRS] can lose documents then destroy the backup source, the backup tapes, and nothing happens,” Jordan said. “Any American, that happens to them — they’re in big trouble and everybody knows it.”