Politics

Biden’s Reliance On I.R.S. Enforcement To Pay For $1.85 Trillion Bill Hits A Snag

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The administration’s ability to raise taxes to pay for the spending has already run into resistance. Mr. Manchin and other moderate Democrats have opposed efforts to sharply raise taxes on corporations and the wealthiest Americans. That has left the Biden administration increasingly reliant on capturing uncollected tax revenue from the $7 trillion “tax gap” to pay for a sweeping expansion of child care, health and climate initiatives.

The proposal to give the I. R.S. an additional $80 billion over a decade has drawn fierce resistance from Republicans, right-leaning advocacy groups and banks, which have warned that an empowered tax collection agency will be weaponized against conservatives and target ordinary taxpayers.

The Biden administration has insisted that audit rates for people earning less than $400,000 per year would not rise, but that a large expansion of the nation’s social safety net could be funded just by collecting tax revenue that is already owed to the government.

The big question is: How much money is there for the taking?

A preliminary assessment by the budget office this year suggested that … (Read more)