Its not about politics, but rather why Tea Party groups are singled out. They are no more or less likely to not qualify for this status than any of the hundreds of liberal or other groups that likewise engage in politics, but still qualified.Ruth Marcus: IRS has been too lax on tax-exempt status - The Washington Post
But back to the scandal hiding in plain sight. In order to qualify for nonprofit, tax-exempt status under Section 501(c)(4) of the tax code, groups must be “operated exclusively for the promotion of social welfare,” defined as activities “promoting in some way the common good and general welfare of the community.”
However, the IRS has long interpreted “exclusively” to mean “primarily” and allowed 501(c)(4) groups to engage in partisan activity as long as it constitutes less than half their operations. The problem exploded after the Supreme Court’s 2010 ruling in Citizens United, when the number and explicit political involvement of such groups mushroomed.