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Thune Fronting for Rich Tax Cheats

Senator John Thune continues to complain that the Internal Revenue Service is actually going to work harder to enforce the tax laws:

Although there are a number of ways to make the IRS more efficient and accountable, the agency’s recent influx of cash is unlikely to do so given that more than half of the funding is directed toward enforcement, including audits, and only four percent goes toward improving customer service. If you made one of the 250 million phone calls to the IRS that employees failed to answer last year, or if you dealt with a delayed refund from the agency, you probably agree a stronger emphasis on customer service is warranted [Senator John Thune, press release, 2022.11.27].

Hey, Senator Thune: did it ever occur to you that a properly funded IRS can do both customer service and audits? And did it occur to you that maybe customer service doesn’t require as much funding as audits, since the audits of your rich tax-dodging friends will face much higher expenses per customer as they fight the rich dodgers’ lawyers, while customer service doesn’t provoke any costly response from the customers the IRS serves?

Hiring more customer service agents to help everyday taxpayers is a good investment. So is hiring auditors who will do the even harder work of making Thune’s rich cheater-friends pay their fair share.

26 Comments

  1. scott 2022-11-28 07:00

    If the IRS hired more people, then they could get Trumps audit over with and he could release his taxes. LOL.

  2. larry kurtz 2022-11-28 07:23

    Think MetaBank.

    A newsletter for the Children’s Home Society of South Dakota, which received a record $55 million from Sanford in 2019, featured an illustration of him drawn by a child in appreciation of his support. Affiliates of the health system have employed Kimberley Thune, the wife of the second-ranking Republican in the Senate, according to John Thune’s financial disclosures. Thune’s office didn’t respond to requests for comment, and a woman who picked up Kimberley Thune’s cellphone hung up on a ProPublica reporter.

    https://www.propublica.org/article/billionaire-t-denny-sanford-was-under-investigation-for-child-pornography

  3. O 2022-11-28 09:05

    IF the Honorable Senator cared about “customer service,” he would simplify the IRS code so that those calls would be unnecessary in the first place. the tax code and process has been deliberately created in a way to make it nearly impossible for a law-abiding individual to navigate by his or herself. In fact, the government could just do taxes — we submit to them information THEY provide us.

    No, Cory’s thesis is correct, the tax code and enforcement system is created to enable the wealthy cheats to work the system and avoid their assessed share of payments (which are already obscenely too low).

  4. Donald Pay 2022-11-28 09:48

    I don’t mind a delay in my refund, if it means the wealthy tax cheats, like Trump, get tossed in prison. The biggest crooks, though, are Senators like Thune who create the loopholes for the wealthy to legally escape paying their taxes.

  5. cibvet 2022-11-28 09:55

    The very senators who create loopholes also use them to escape paying taxes. Remember Leona Helmsley’s famous quote” only little people pay taxes”.

  6. larry kurtz 2022-11-28 10:30

    John Thune is ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee with access to hides money in South Dakota’s banks and trusts. He brokered the deal between Faceberg and MetaBank after many meetings with Zuckerstein. Trump was installed by the Electoral College because Thune steered congressional investigators away.

  7. LCJ 2022-11-28 11:39

    Maybe the IRS could cut their budget for the millions of rounds of ammunition that they don’t need.

  8. e platypus onion 2022-11-28 13:08

    Any evidence to show wealthy individuals bribed magats to set up trust protections in your state?

  9. LCJ 2022-11-28 13:43

    Politifact is not an unbiased fact checker. If that is what you are trying to imply, maybe just try to do your own research and not be Mr. cut and paste.

  10. bearcreekbat 2022-11-28 14:00

    LCJ, rather than trying to avoid the accuracy of the Polifact report by refocusing the issue as to whether or not Polifact is biased, can you specifically identify which statements in the Polifact report you assert to be factually incorrect and identify the sources you are relying upon? It often seems that when someone tries to refocus the nature of a discussion to a writer’s personality or bias or method of arguing or grammatical issues, this is just a means of saying that there is no good response to the merits of the writer’s factual statements so distraction is necessary, which in this case gives even more credibility to everything that Polifact has reported.

  11. Arlo Blundt 2022-11-28 14:55

    The Tax Avoidance Industry is huge and wealthy. Of course, they will have robust representation in Congress. This hand on glove relationship will be difficult to change as long as the very rich resist fair and reasonable taxation….which will be forever.

  12. O 2022-11-28 15:25

    Arlo, I expect the rich to promote their own selfish interests; I am disappointed that a majority of voters continue to help them support those interests — even against their own self-interests. The 99% should be removing these office holders who represent the interests of the 1% to the detriment of the 99% in a lesson in democracy, but instead the opposite is true election after election.

  13. larry kurtz 2022-11-28 15:32

    South Dakota owns loads of the means of production: part of the very definition of socialism.

    Readers who know the ag mags and media can see where rural state Republicans like John Thune tout their brand of corporate welfare while voting against any money for blue states. The Farm Bill pork is just waiting to be diced and sliced.

  14. larry kurtz 2022-11-28 15:34

    If cattle grazing is the key to preventing wildfires in ranch country why are mostly Republican counties still suffering near daily high or even extreme grassland fire danger indices so often even during the winter?

  15. e platypus onion 2022-11-28 15:44

    Truther Gaetz claimed antifa was behind the violence on Jan 6th. He is not a reliable source of any truth whatsoever.

  16. e platypus onion 2022-11-28 15:46

    IRS spending 700k on ammo in any one year is not unusual at all. Neither are the lies right wingers spew about everything Biden and Dens do.or have done.

  17. larry kurtz 2022-11-28 16:09

    Ag and livestock producers in red Trump states are suffering from sagging profits, flaccid numbers, and limp resolve.

    Congress needs to stop fleecing American taxpayers to further enrich large agribusinesses. It can start immediately with ending bailouts and limiting the exposure that taxpayers have in connection with these massive new farm-handout programs. That $15 billion should be in the pockets of taxpayers, not large agribusinesses.

    https://www.heritage.org/agriculture/commentary/handouts-the-agriculture-industry-are-out-control

  18. larry kurtz 2022-11-28 17:40

    $20 says John Thune didn’t leave the US Senate because someone convinced him Trump would be thrown under the bus. Now that’s actually happening.

    The national Republican Party is in a box. If they don’t nominate Donald Trump as their guy in 2024 he will run an unaffiliated campaign and they’ll lose the White House anyway so GOP support to block him under the Fourteenth Amendment looks like its best course but don’t expect a sitting Republican to bring it up.

  19. R. Kolbe 2022-11-28 19:30

    Sen John has developed a severe case of HUA ( cranium inserted in Sygmoid)

  20. Mark Anderson 2022-11-28 20:07

    Larry, you mean the base of white surpremist’s, antisemitic’s , misogynist’s, anti-LGBTQ’s, Christian nationalists, QAnon’s, book burners, moms for liberty, proud boys, oath keeper’s, all those groups and more who love Trump and don’t want him thrown under the bus are really losers???

  21. paladn 2022-11-29 08:41

    Will The Senator and his friends include in the proposed amended Code that the defined “Income” for members of Congress” include banked campaign funds not used in campaigns and taken home upon retirement or defeat and leaving Congress? Seems to be a current untapped source of income for IRS.

  22. John R Hasenauer 2022-11-30 17:41

    Introduction Summary of the increased funding of the IRS
    • The IRS will not just hire 87,000 new tax agents to come after average tax earners. While more auditors will be added, there are other positions to fill at the agency, including employees that provide taxpayer services. The Treasury Department has directed the IRS to ensure that individuals earning less than $400,000″ are audited relative to historical levels.”
    Why is the IRS hiring so many new employees this year?
    • “Of the net new hires, the majority are hired to improve customer services – from upgrading IT to answering phone calls,” a Treasury Department spokesperson said. The IRS might net about 30,000 new hires from now until 2031, as a result the new funding and as a result of a large number of retirements and departures.
    • 50,000 workers are expected to leave the IRS in the next few years.
    How many employees can the IRS hire with $80 billion in funding?
    • The report estimated that the IRS could hire 86,852 employees by 2031 with nearly $80 billion in additional funding. But Sarin said the new funding would also be used to hire other types of employees, such as customer service representatives and IT specialists, and not just new auditors. And funds would also be used to update outdated 20-year-old computer systems. The goal is to provide better customer service and increase audits of flagged returns from those earning over $400,000 dollars and reducing those tax cheaters paying what the owe.
    • Bogged down by a processing system that’s more than half a century old and a backlog that includes millions of unprocessed paper filings, the IRS has been in need of more resources and support for a while.
    • The customer service department has been woefully short-staffed as well. During the 2022 filing season, the IRS received around 73 million phone calls from taxpayers — but only 10% were actually answered.
    • “The combination of more than 21 million unprocessed paper tax returns, more than 14 million math error notices, eight-month backlogs in processing taxpayer correspondence, and extraordinary difficulty reaching the IRS by phone made this filing season particularly challenging,” national taxpayer advocate Erin M. Collins wrote in her midyear report to Congress.
    • On top of these issues, former IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig estimated in 2021 that the agency is losing $1 trillion in unpaid taxes each year — particularly due to evasion from the rich and big businesses. He also indicated they could be slipping through the cracks in part due to the lightly regulated cryptocurrency market, foreign source income and abuse of pass-through provisions.

    I prepared taxes for several years including with AARP taxes as a volunteer.

  23. John Dale 2022-12-01 10:02

    Thune’s vulnerability is election integrity.

    We all know it was stolen.

    Most go along with the flow.

    Thune’s flow.

    The election integrity denier.

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