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POINT: More IRS agents only the start with tax-hiking bill

From the column: "By voting to supersize the IRS, Democrats are directly filling their own campaign war chests."

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Dick Wright / Cagle Cartoons
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All 50 Democratic senators voted in lockstep to raise taxes in a recession, to increase spending and corporate welfare during runaway inflation, and to take $80 billion from American taxpayers to hire 87,000 more IRS agents tasked with squeezing small-business men and women.

More IRS agents, the IRS itself tells us, will allow for 50% more audits of small businesses. Why? The IRS acknowledges it picks up the phone only between 10% and 20% of the time when you call. But the Inflation Reduction Act will swell the number of IRS auditors. In fact, the legislation shovels 14 times more money for “enforcement” (audits) than it does for “taxpayer services” — such as answering the phone.

The IRS acknowledged that 53% of its employees never set foot in an office. They work from home. Not answering your phone calls. The other 47% of IRS staff? How often do they come to work? The IRS chief told Congress that most of the remainder work in a blended capacity, where they go into the office occasionally.

From the column: "Republicans simply don't want to let Democrats score points by enacting a signature piece of Biden's domestic agenda, whatever the benefits to their constituents, especially this close to the midterm elections."

By voting to supersize the IRS, Democrats are directly filling their own campaign war chests. You see, the IRS union is a major funder of the Democratic Party.

In fact, 100% of the union’s PAC donations go to Democratic Party committees. The IRS union is conveniently “investing” in Senate Democrats in 2022 battleground election contests. In addition to the $30,000 donation to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, the union gave $10,000 to Sen. Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire and $5,000 to Raphael Warnock of Georgia. It gave much to the very senators who just voted for this bill.

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More IRS agents, more union dues, and more money for Democratic politicians.

Why raise taxes now? Even former President Barack Obama knows it is a bad idea to raise taxes in a recession. He said : “The last thing you want to do is raise taxes in a recession.”

Joe Manchin, D-West Virginia, was supposed to be the “moderate” who would stop the reckless tax-and-spending spree. Back in 2010, when he was asking West Virginians to send him to Washington, he said , “I don’t think during a time of recession you mess with any of the taxes or increase any taxes.”

Manchin looked into the camera and said , “I can’t look the people of West Virginia in the eye and ask them to pay a penny more until I know we’re running this government efficiently.”

Energy prices are far above where they were when President Joe Biden was sworn in due to his anti-energy policies. Now Democrats are advancing this bill with three different taxes that will increase energy costs. It raises taxes on oil, natural gas production, and coal. These taxes will hit Americans every time they fill their gas tanks or pay their utility bills.

Biden and the Democrats named their legislation “The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022.” Why? Only a year ago, Biden told us there was no inflation. It was transitory. It would be over by December 2021. It was caused by Vladimir Putin. Or greedy business people. Why did everyone wait to get greedy until the Democrats won the House, Senate, and presidency?

Or might it be the spend and spend-and-inflate policies Biden signed into law?

By the way, even Sen. Bernie Sanders acknowledged the Democratic bill — “the so-called Inflation Reduction Act” (his words) — will have a “ minimal impact ” on inflation.

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Of the $330 billion in new taxes put on businesses, we know that historically 70% of the corporate income tax is paid by workers in lower wages and employment. And 30% is paid by consumers paying higher prices to cover the cost of those taxes.

Taxes are a cost of any business. American businesses pay the wages of workers, the cost of raw materials, and the cost of regulations and taxes.

America wants to compete on lower taxes and regulations — not lower wages.

And what will all these tax dollars pay for? Well, they are spending billions for “environmental justice,” which includes paying people to walk around in cities and identify “ gaps in tree canopy coverage .” That is a lot of walking-around money for somebody. One could, for free, look at Google photos of any American city and find how many trees there are. For free.

The Democratic spending bill also provides billions for well-to-do Americans to buy expensive $80,000 electric vehicles. There are billions in more subsidies for Obamacare, even for those making $300,000 per year. Obamacare is so good you have to subsidize people to use it.

The bill raises taxes on America’s manufacturing base. Raises taxes on energy. More taxes on businesses will reduce the value of your life savings in an IRA or 401(k) or pension. More money for the IRS. Lots of cash to be handed out in pork-barrel spending.

Isn’t that how we got into this mess?

Grover Norquist is president of Americans for Tax Reform (atr.org), a politically conservative advocacy group headquartered in Washington, D.C.

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Grover Norquist

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