Lawmakers sponsor legislation to prevent IRS from being used as political weapon against citizens

Senator Roy Blunt

U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.) announced that he and other lawmakers are co-sponsors of legislation to prevent the Internal Revenue Service from being used as a political weapon against American citizens.

“People across Missouri are rightly concerned about the kind of government overreach and political targeting we’ve seen from the IRS in the past,” said Blunt. “I’m proud to join dozens of my colleagues in this effort to prevent any administration from using the IRS to target Americans for their political beliefs.”

From 2010 to 2012, the IRS under the Obama administration spent over two years systematically targeting conservative tax-exempt groups. The Trump administration released a final rule in May 2020 that prevented the IRS from targeting certain tax-exempt groups based on their political beliefs.

Senate Democrats’ S.1 – a partisan, 800+ page election bill – and House Democrats’ companion legislation – H.R. 1 – seek to repeal and undermine the Trump administration rule in order to weaponize the IRS to target nonprofit organizations based on the applicants’ political and policy positions.

The Don’t Weaponize the IRS Act codifies the Trump administration rule that protects groups regardless of their political ideology or beliefs and prevents the IRS from doxing donors to these groups.

Removing the requirement to report the names and addresses of donors helps protect taxpayers’ First Amendment rights: such information is not needed for tax administration purposes.

The bill is endorsed by the following groups: American Commitment, Americans for Prosperity, Americans for Tax Reform, Association of Mature American Citizens, Council for Citizens Against Government Waste, Club for Growth, Freedom Works, Heritage Action for America, Institute for Free Speech, National Taxpayers Union, and People United for Privacy.

The bill is led by U.S. Senators Mike Braun (Ind.) and Mitch McConnell (Ky.). In addition to Blunt, the legislation is co-sponsored by U.S. Senators Mike Crapo (Idaho), Ted Cruz (Texas), Cindy Hyde-Smith (Miss.), Shelley Moore Capito (W.Va.), Mike Lee (Utah), Cynthia Lummis (Wyo.), Thom Tillis (N.C.), Ron Johnson (Wis.), Rand Paul (Ky.), Mike Rounds (S.D.), Marsha Blackburn (Tenn.), Richard Shelby (Ala.), John Cornyn (Texas), Roger Marshall (Kan.), Tommy Tuberville (Ala.), John Barrasso (Wyo.), Josh Hawley (Mo.), Steve Daines (Mont.), Richard Burr (N.C.), Bill Cassidy (La.), Rick Scott (Fla.), Jim Risch (Idaho), Pat Toomey (Pa.), Kevin Cramer (N.D.), Joni Ernst (Iowa), James Lankford (Okla.), Jerry Moran (Kan.), James Inhofe (Okla.), Roger Wicker (Miss.), John Thune (S.D.), Todd Young (Ind.), Chuck Grassley (Iowa), Ben Sasse (Neb.), Bill Hagerty (Tenn.), John Boozman (Ark.), Deb Fischer (Neb.), Marco Rubio (Fla.), Tom Cotton (Ark.), John Hoeven (N.D.), and John Kennedy (La.).