After partnering with Tea Party groups to go after the IRS, a liberal-leaning advocacy group in Utah wins a settlement

SALT LAKE CITY — A left-leaning public policy group in Utah has won a settlement with the Internal Revenue Service after it joined Tea Party groups in a class action lawsuit.

The Alliance for a Better Utah told FOX 13 on Thursday it received a $28,000 settlement as part of the settlement with the IRS. In 2016, the group joined Tea Party organizations in a class action lawsuit against the IRS for targeting their nonprofit status.

“Progressive organizations were targeted as well,” said Chase Thomas, ABU’s executive director. “We were delayed in our nonprofit status.”

Alliance for a Better Utah claims it was also caught up in the 2013 political scandal where the IRS was accused of putting extra scrutiny on the tax-exempt status of certain groups. A government report claimed groups with words like “tea party” and “patriots” had their applications held up. Alliance for a Better Utah said it happened to them, too.

When the lawsuit was filed back in 2016, ABU expected only $1,000 but was surprised to get a pair of checks in the mail Thursday for $14,000 each (one to the main organization and another to their education fund).

While ideologically they are polar opposites from Tea Party organizations, ABU has occasionally found itself working alongside conservative leaning organizations and politicians where they find agreement. For example, ABU on Thursday backed Republican Utah Governor Gary Herbert’s push to spend $100 million for air quality improvements.