Bipartisanship Is Awesome! The Tax Filing Edition

I’m glad to see our political system can transcend partisanship to…make it harder and more expensive to file your taxes (boldface mine):

Just in time for Tax Day, the for-profit tax preparation industry is about to realize one of its long-sought goals. Congressional Democrats and Republicans are moving to permanently bar the IRS from creating a free electronic tax filing system.

Last week, the House Ways and Means Committee, led by Rep. Richard Neal, D-Mass., passed the Taxpayer First Act, a wide-ranging bill making several administrative changes to the IRS that is sponsored by Reps. John Lewis, D-Ga., and Mike Kelly, R-Pa.

In one of its provisions, the bill makes it illegal for the IRS to create its own online system of tax filing. Companies like Intuit, the maker of TurboTax, and H&R Block have lobbied for years to block the IRS from creating such a system. If the tax agency created its own program, which would be similar to programs other developed countries have, it would threaten the industry’s profits.

“This could be a disaster. It could be the final nail in the coffin of the idea of the IRS ever being able to create its own program,” said Mandi Matlock, a tax attorney who does work for the National Consumer Law Center.

Why provide a government service when you can let campaign contributors earn a profit? Speaking of campaign contributions, guess which gormless asshole showed up?

Those efforts have been fueled by hefty lobbying spending and campaign contributions by the industry. Intuit and H&R Block last year poured a combined $6.6 million into lobbying related to the IRS filing deal and other issues. Neal, who became Ways and Means chair this year after Democrats took control of the House, received $16,000 in contributions from Intuit and H&R Block in the last two election cycles.

Yep. That Richard Neal.

This is just a campaign cash money grab. There’s no reason to do this at all. This isn’t even neo-liberalism (at least the platonic ideal of it), this is just crony capitalism, U.S. of A style.

This entry was posted in Conservatives, Democrats, Fucking Morons, Taxes. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Bipartisanship Is Awesome! The Tax Filing Edition

  1. gtomkins says:

    It’s even worse than simple and direct pay-offs in the form of campaign contributions. It is the conventional wisdom in our country right now that the private sector can do anything better than govt. It is also conventional wisdom that any rent-collection opportunity has to be left open for the owners to profit from, as a matter of morality and the sanctity of property rights. The fact that money can be made from tax prep software means that the owners have to be allowed to make that money.

  2. Bern says:

    Embarrassments to humanity…

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