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Thursday, May 16, 2013

Obama to Name Budget Official as Acting I.R.S. Chief

WASHINGTON — President Obama is naming Daniel I. Werfel, the controller of the Office of Management and Budget, to be the new acting commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service, the White House announced Thursday.

Mr. Werfel, who currently manages much of the day-to-day operations at the budget office, will replace Steven Miller, the departing interim director of the agency, who is at the heart of the controversy over the I.R.S.'s targeting of conservative groups.

The announcement from the White House said Mr. Werfel would begin his new job on May 22.

“Danny has proven an effective leader who serves with professionalism, integrity and skill,” Mr. Obama said 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 I.R.S., Danny has the experience and management ability necessary to lead the agency at this important time.”

As one of the top officials at the budget office, Mr. Werfel has been the administration’s point man on one of the thorniest political problems in the last six months: the across-the-board spending cuts known as sequestration.

As controller, Mr. Werfel is responsible for making sure that the departments and agencies of the federal government adhere to the sequestration law.

Now, the president is charging Mr. Werfel with another difficult task: overseeing the I.R.S. in the middle of a scandal. Republicans — and some Democrats — have made it clear that they intend to hold numerous hearings over the next several months. It will be Mr. Werfel’s job to comply with their demands even as he keeps the agency running.

- Michael D. Shear, NYTimes.com

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