Lawmakers expressed both anger and bewilderment that IRS leaders had not told Congress sooner about indications that the tax agency had improperly singled out conservatives and Tea Party groups seeking tax-exempt status.
A highly anticipated hearing by the top investigative committee in the Republican-controlled House delivered on the drama that was expected.
Lois Lerner, the IRS official in charge of the division accused of wrongdoing, invoked her Fifth Amendment right against testifying, and defiantly asserted her innocence.
"I have not done anything wrong. I have not broken any laws," she said.