Republicans want Lynch update on Lerner investigation request

(CNN)Republicans on the House Ways and Means Committee want to know what Attorney General Loretta Lynch is going to do with their request that she criminally investigate Lois Lerner.

Lerner was the IRS official at the center of allegations that the Internal Revenue Service targeted tea party groups applying for nonprofit status.
Last year, the chairman of the Ways and Means Committee asked the Justice Department to investigate potential criminal wrongdoing.
In a letter sent Thursday, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan and his fellow Republicans asked the new attorney general for an update on their request.
    They note that in March, the U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia declined to prosecute Lerner for contempt of Congress after she refused to testify before the House Oversight Committee.
    But, Ryan and the Republicans write, the U.S. attorney did not address his committee's criminal referral, which included evidence that Lynch may have violated the law.
    The criminal referral, sent in April 2014, said Lerner used her position to influence action against conservative groups, impeded an official investigation by providing misleading statements and may have disclosed confidential taxpayer information.
    "The committee continues to believe that these serious charges should be (pursued) by the Department of Justice. We would appreciate receiving an update on the status of the referral as soon as possible," Ryan and the Republicans wrote.
    A Justice Department spokeswoman did not immediately return a request for comment.