Headline RoundupJanuary 24th, 2023

Are House Republicans Actually Trying to Abolish the IRS?

AllSides Summary

In recent days, notable Democratic Party members condemned House Republicans for allegedly pushing radical tax code reform. Is this true?

For Context: The proposed ‘Fair Tax Act’ would abolish the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and income taxes, and instate a 30% national sales tax. Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) reportedly agreed to bring the bill to a vote as part of concessions he made to Republican representatives who initially withheld support for his House Speaker bid.

In Favor: Rep. Buddy Carter (R-Ga.) spearheaded the bill, and recently said that if people "are going to pay a tax, I think they would much rather pay a consumption tax as opposed to an income tax." Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-Ga.) said the proposal "simplifies the tax code—eliminating the need for the IRS and establishing a fair system for all Americans."

Skeptical: Grover Norquist, a tax reduction advocate, outlined the history of the proposed legislation, which has been introduced by Republican lawmakers in every congress since 1999 but has lost support within the party, “falling from a peak of 76 House Republicans in 2015 to 24 today.” Norquist concluded the Fair Tax Act "has no hope of passing in the House." Steve Benen, a producer for The Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC (Left Bias), concluded that Democratic leaders "couldn’t be more pleased" that the legislation is being pushed by select Republicans House members, and that Democrats are "eager, almost desperate, to treat the bill like a pinata."

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