Democrats are furious about the proposed IRS cuts

Democrats are outraged by Republican proposals to cut IRS funding and dismantle the agency's new free online tax filing system.

House Ways and Means Democrats called Republicans' latest Financial Services and General Government (FSGG) funding bill “disastrous” in a statement Thursday, accusing the GOP of risking a new spending battle that led to the downgrade of the US credit rating by a major rating agency. year.

“It appears that the Republicans' 2023-2024 credit disaster wasn't enough for their conference. … Just three months after Democrats ruled from the minority again and averted the worst of the Republicans' chaos and budget cuts, the Republican Party is back with another set of extreme, unworkable bills,” they wrote.

Republicans on Tuesday proposed cutting the IRS enforcement budget by $2 billion and funding the agency at $10.1 billion for fiscal year 2025, which would be $2.2 billion below 2024 levels.

Ways and means Democrats describe the cuts as “drastic.”

House Appropriations Committee Chairman Tom Cole (R-Okla.) said Tuesday that the bill “protects taxpayers and limits the burdensome hands of unelected bureaucrats.”

Top Democratic appropriator Steny Hoyer (Md.) expressed his displeasure Wednesday with the IRS funding at the FSGG marker.

“We must respond to President Biden's request to fund the IRS at fiscal year '24 levels. Ideally, we will provide additional funding beyond the request to offset recent cuts to the agency,” he said.

The Republicans' desired cancellation of the IRS's Direct File online tax filing program, which was piloted in 12 states this year and recently made permanent by the Treasury Department, was also troubling to Hoyer.

“If the government requires Americans to pay their taxes, we should also provide them with a free and easy way to do so. “I honestly have a hard time understanding why we don't have that service if we want to make paying taxes legal and easy,” he said.

The Treasury Department has zealously defended its Direct File program, arguing that it fills a glaring need in the tax system. Americans spend an average of $270 and 13 hours filing their taxes, a Treasury Department official told The Hill on Tuesday, citing the IRS tax investigation.

The IRS received an initial $80 billion funding increase in Democrats' 2022 Inflation Reduction Act, which would be issued over the following decade. That amount has since been cut by a quarter in the form of regular appropriations cuts due to Republican backlash.

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