Obama IRS Chief Thinks Biden IRS Funding is Excessive

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Posted by Alex Hendrie on Wednesday, April 28th, 2021, 10:26 AM PERMALINK

Even Obama IRS chief John Koskinen – a longtime advocate of increasing the IRS budget – thinks President Joe Biden’s proposal to increase IRS funding by $80 billion is too much.

As reported by the New York Times, Koskinen thinks $25 billion, or roughly 30 percent of Biden’s proposal would be a more appropriate funding increase:

“I’m not sure you’d be able to efficiently use that much money,” Mr. Koskinen said in an interview. “That’s a lot of money.”

Mr. Koskinen said he thought an extra $25 billion over a decade would help bring the I.R.S. budget back to where it was around 2010, allowing it to hire enforcement agents who have been lost to attrition and revamp the agency’s customer service capabilities.

IRS Fiscal Year 2021 funding is $11.9 billion, including $5.2 billion for enforcement (audits, criminal investigations etc.) and just $2.5 billion for taxpayer services (taxpayer advocacy, assistance, education etc.). Assuming all new IRS funding goes to enforcement, Biden would be increasing spending on audits and investigations by 150 percent.

This funding is clearly excessive and will grant the IRS new tools to target taxpayers, including middle class Americans and small businesses. The agency has a history of mismanagement, ineptitude and abuse. Rather than fixing these problems, Biden’s funding will provide the IRS with new funding to target taxpayers.

Photo Credit: Brookings Institution

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