White House spokesman Jay Carney said, in response to a question about the I.R.S. targeting conservative groups, that the I.R.S. is run by a George W. Bush political appointee:

"I.R.S. is an independent enforcement agency," said Carney. "The -- which I believe, as I understand it, contains only two political appointees within it. The individual who is running the I.R.S. at the time was actually an appointee from the previous administration."

The previous administration was George W. Bush's administration.

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