Baucus has yet to schedule a Finance hearing to consider Koskinen’s nomination, in large part because the panel is still sifting through nomination paperwork it only received late last month. Koskinen is scheduled to meet with Sen. Orrin Hatch (Utah), the top Republican at Finance, on Thursday.
The IRS nominee, known as a turnaround specialist, would take over an agency plagued by controversy this year, following a top official’s admission this year that the service singled out Tea Party groups seeking tax-exempt status.
Congressional investigators are continuing to look into the IRS’s targeting, and House Republicans have made clear that they’re going to keep the issue center stage. Baucus and Hatch have been more tight-lipped about their inquiry.
In his statement, Baucus said he also briefed Koskinen about his recent tour with House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) to bolster support for tax reform – an overriding goal for both chairmen, as they face their final 16 months with the gavel.
“Mr. Koskinen was open to my ideas and suggestions and understands the need to strengthen and improve America’s tax code,” Baucus said.
Koskinen has years of experience in both the federal government and the corporate world, but little on his resume that dealt with tax administration. But that lack of experience in tax matters has not publicly troubled senators, at least as of yet.