The PJ Tatler

Good News: House Takes a Machete to IRS Budget

It’s a start.

Internal Revenue Service Commissioner John Koskinen was prepared for the worst and that was pretty much what he got from the House. With just weeks remaining before the new tax season opens, the House walloped the embattled agency with $350 million in budget cuts. That’s in addition to earlier slashes to the IRS budget of more than $1 billion since 2010, resulting in nearly 13,000 employee layoffs. More cuts, the Commissioner had warned previously, would make upcoming tax season “miserable,” a sentiment echoed by the National Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson.

Representatives touted the cuts as much needed but it looks like something else: revenge. Many in Congress are still fuming about the tax-exempt organization scandal and those missing Lerner emails. Others are angry about reports of wasteful spending. And still others see this as a great opportunity to keep IRS from properly implementing pieces of the Affordable Care Act – yes, the same Act that Congress pushed through a few years ago, tasking IRS with related administrative responsibilities.

For some very odd reason, the Forbes contributor who wrote this post is sympathetic to the supposed financial plight of the IRS.

Cutting funds to an agency that has been going rogue at the request of the president isn’t revenge, it’s good business. There isn’t a bureaucratic agency in existence that couldn’t use some fat-trimming, but when one is caught deliberately misusing funds it should be given a budget with no extra money to misspend again.