From GOP chair to militias, the right issues baseless warnings about armed IRS thugs

From GOP chair to militias, the right issues baseless warnings about armed IRS thugs
Photo by Tim Mossholder / Unsplash

The Biden Administration's proposal to double the budget of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and add 87,000 employees has received significant pushback from conservatives. The proposed plan is set to become law as part of the soon-to-be-enacted Inflation Reduction Act. Many are concerned that this increase in IRS personnel will result in an overreach of power, similar to what occurred during the Obama Administration.

Some have drawn parallels between the proposed increase in IRS personnel and the recent FBI raid of former President Donald Trump's compound in Mar-a-Lago, Florida. Critics argue that the Biden Administration has turned the FBI and the Justice Department into functionaries of the Democratic Party's character assassination campaign. Many are concerned that this same level of partisanship will be applied to the IRS, with auditors going on search-and-destroy missions.

Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) has dismissed concerns about taxpayer abuses by stating, "If you're not cheating on your taxes, you have nothing to worry about." However, many view this as the language of tyrants, and some have had firsthand experience with the IRS's overreach of power.

One individual who went through a three-year dispute with the IRS shared that it cost them tens of thousands of dollars in attorney and tax accountant fees, until the IRS admitted fault with a "Whoops, we're sorry, we were wrong. Have a nice day." This individual emphasized that when one is under investigation by the IRS and the agency places a lien on their bank account, they are guilty until they prove themselves innocent.

Conservatives have not forgotten the weaponization of the tax collection agency during President Barack Obama's administration. Obama political appointee Lois Lerner targeted the Tea Party and other taxpayer groups with a conservative orientation. Many view this as an intentional action, and Lerner never even apologized or testified before Congress.

As such, the proposed increase in IRS personnel has sparked concern among conservatives, who fear a similar level of overreach of power. The Biden Administration has yet to address these concerns, but the debate over the IRS's potential misuse of power is likely to continue.

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