IRS spying countered by privacy bill
Republicans introduce Protecting Financial Privacy Act
Republicans in Congress have introduced legislation aimed at stopping a proposal from the Biden administration that would force banks to report every customer transaction of $600 or more to the Internal Revenue Service.
Sen. Tommy Tuberville, R-Ala., introduced the Protecting Financial Privacy Act of 2021 last week, which would "prohibit any Federal agency from requiring financial institutions to report on the financial transactions of their customers."
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Tuberville told FOX Business' Larry Kudlow that the legislation is aimed at stopping "the Gestapo agency of the IRS" from spying on Americans through their bank accounts.
"They want everything," the Alabama Republican said of the IRS. "They want to know how much money you got in the bank, how much you're spending if you bought a wedding dress or a gun – they're going to have a list a mile long on you."
Rep. Ashley Hinson, R-Iowa, introduced the bill in the House of Representatives, saying in a statement, "The push to include this provision in reconciliation, along with $80 billion to nearly quadruple the IRS budget, is reflective of how backwards Democrat priorities are right now – we need more border agents, not more IRS agents."
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"The IRS should not be snooping in our bank accounts," Hinson told FOX Business' "Varney & Co.," adding, "That's exactly what President Biden wants to happen, it's what these Democrats want to happen."
But with Democrats controlling the White House and both chambers of Congress, the GOP legislation could face an uphill climb.
When asked by host Stuart Varney whether she has the votes to pass the bill and if she expects any Democrats to push back against the IRS enhanced snooping, Hinson said, "They should be."
Pointing to Democrats' $3.5 trillion reconciliation package being stalled due to their own infighting, Hinson suggested some Democrats are "probably hearing the same thing I am back home, which is that this is not right."
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The plan to increase IRS enforcement and force reporting on $600 transactions is supported by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who argued in a Senate hearing last week that banks already report some information directly to the IRS, and the agency already has "a wealth of information about individuals."