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Tue Apr 16, 2019, 04:55 PM

David Frum says Congress "could abolish the IRS tomorrow."

He's not saying they will. But he's saying that Congress has authority over taxes, under the Constitution, and that Congress is in charge of the IRS, not the other way around. He's saying that Trump's lawyers were wrong to say: "Congress has no authority to act as a junior varsity IRS."

Frum's statement was in response to the letter from Trump's lawyers to the Treasury, asking them not to comply with Rep. Neal's Oversight's Committee request for tax returns.




Among other things, the letter from Trump's lawyers is aggressively rude. "Congress has no authority to act as a junior varsity IRS." Seriously? Article I, Section 8 vests all taxing power in Congress. It could abolish the IRS tomorrow. Of course it has authority over the IRS





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Reply David Frum says Congress "could abolish the IRS tomorrow." (Original post)
pnwmom Apr 2019 OP
elleng Apr 2019 #1
OnDoutside Apr 2019 #2
dumbcat Apr 2019 #4
elleng Apr 2019 #5
dumbcat Apr 2019 #8
pnwmom Apr 2019 #12
paleotn Apr 2019 #20
dumbcat Apr 2019 #24
paleotn Apr 2019 #29
dumbcat Apr 2019 #3
SlogginThroughIt Apr 2019 #7
dumbcat Apr 2019 #10
pnwmom Apr 2019 #14
pnwmom Apr 2019 #13
dumbcat Apr 2019 #15
pnwmom Apr 2019 #16
dumbcat Apr 2019 #19
paleotn Apr 2019 #22
thesquanderer Apr 2019 #18
dumbcat Apr 2019 #21
thesquanderer Apr 2019 #31
jmowreader Apr 2019 #25
FakeNoose Apr 2019 #6
Takket Apr 2019 #9
FakeNoose Apr 2019 #11
madinmaryland Apr 2019 #17
alwaysinasnit Apr 2019 #23
jmowreader Apr 2019 #28
alwaysinasnit Apr 2019 #30
oldsoftie Apr 2019 #26
procon Apr 2019 #32
oldsoftie Apr 2019 #33
brooklynite Apr 2019 #34
oldsoftie Apr 2019 #35
brooklynite Apr 2019 #36
oldsoftie Apr 2019 #37
spanone Apr 2019 #27

Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 05:12 PM

1. Article I, Section 8 vests all taxing power in Congress.

It could abolish the IRS tomorrow. Of course it has authority over the IRS.

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Response to elleng (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 05:36 PM

2. Surely that's irrelevant, as Congress is split ?

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Response to elleng (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 05:45 PM

4. Just how do you think Congress could abolish it tomorrow?

Within the bounds of the Constitution?

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Response to dumbcat (Reply #4)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 05:47 PM

5. Ask Frum.

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Response to elleng (Reply #5)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 05:53 PM

8. No. I'm asking you

You made the statement in your post:

elleng (88,988 posts)

1. Article I, Section 8 vests all taxing power in Congress.

It could abolish the IRS tomorrow. Of course it has authority over the IRS.


You're here, Frum's not.

How could Congress abolish the IRS tomorrow?

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Response to dumbcat (Reply #8)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 06:26 PM

12. Of course it would take time to pass legislation. But Frum is pointing out that the IRS

answers to and is subservient to Congress, not the other way around.

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Response to dumbcat (Reply #8)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:46 PM

20. dude....

Is the point THAT hard to comprehend? Congress is invested with the right to tax...period...end of fucking story. Congress. Not the President. Not the Judiciary. Congress. Most particularly the House. Congress. It says it right fucking there in The Constitution. Congress. Done.

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Response to paleotn (Reply #20)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:50 PM

24. I give up

Is the point THAT hard to comprehend? Congress is invested with the right to tax...period...end of fucking story.


I am done trying to reason with people that don't understand the difference between a "right" and a "power" in the Constitution.

Done. Period.

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Response to dumbcat (Reply #24)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:59 PM

29. In my mind

they are the same. The Treasury, specifically the IRS, is invested with the power to enforce certain laws, passed by Congress, that fall under their purview. In fact, the IRS exists only by an act of Congress...The Revenue Act of 1862. Only Congress has the right, power, ability, whatever the fucking hell you want to fucking call it, to tax AND to create or completely dismantle the IRS. Am I clear or should I draw you a picture?

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Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 05:43 PM

3. How could they do that

on their own? They could pass a bill,but Trump would have to sign it into law. If he vetoed it, do you think the current Congress would override the veto? I don't. Most people are smart enough to realize that if the IRS was abolished tomorrow the economy and the government would collapse overnight.

Until the Congress passes a bill AND the President signs it into law, the IRS remains under the Dept of the Treasury, which I believe is part of the Executive Branch.

So, no, Congress could not abolish the IRS tomorrow, no matter what David Frum says, or how much we close our eyes and wish real hard. Jesus, people, it's Civics 101.

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Response to dumbcat (Reply #3)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 05:52 PM

7. I don't think he meant in this political climate

I donít think he meant in this political climate. I think he meant that congress could if it had the votes. Which I believe is true. And because they have that power should they ever decide to vote that way, it is appare t that they hold sway over the IRS.

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Response to SlogginThroughIt (Reply #7)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 06:02 PM

10. I didn't get that caveat

I didn't see any such qualification in Frum's statement. And even if Congress had the votes to pass it, there is still the issue of a possible veto to deal with. Congress would have to have the votes to override the veto.

I, and I suppose many others, wouldn't mind seeing the IRS abolished. But not tomorrow, and there needs to be some idea about how to replace it's functions.

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Response to SlogginThroughIt (Reply #7)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 06:30 PM

14. Right. Congress is in charge of the IRS, not the other way around.

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Response to dumbcat (Reply #3)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 06:29 PM

13. You're missing the point, which is that Congress, according to the Constitution,

is in charge of the IRS, not the other way around.

If a united Congress had the WILL it COULD pass legislation abolishing the IRS, and could override a veto. He's not saying that's likely. He's merely pointing out that Congress has power over the IRS, under the constitution.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #13)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 06:55 PM

15. No, it's not

The IRS falls under the Dept of the Treasury, which is an Executive Dept.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the revenue service of the United States federal government. The government agency is a bureau of the Department of the Treasury, and is under the immediate direction of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue, who is appointed to a five-year term by the President of the United States.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internal_Revenue_Service

The IRS reports to the President of the US, not the Congress.

The Congress has the power of the purse, but it has no more power over the IRS than it has the Dept of the Interior,Energy, agriculture, or the Dept of State. Sure, if Congress had the votes to override a veto, it could abolish any and all of those departments that are not specifically called out in the Constitution at any time they wish. But it has no special power over the Treasury Dept or the IRS than any other Dept. It is exactly the same.

C'mon people! We're supposed to be the smart ones that have read and understand the Constitution. Leave it to the Republican to say stupid stuff.

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Response to dumbcat (Reply #15)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:05 PM

16. Article I, Section 8 vests all taxing power in Congress. Also, the Department of the

Treasury was established by an Act of Congress, not by the Constitution. And the Congress -- which enacted the bill that set it up, and can always enact a new law -- is ultimately in charge of the Department of the Treasury, and that's why it can confirm or not confirm the Treasury Secretary.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Department_of_the_Treasury

The Department of the Treasury (USDT)[2] is an executive department and the treasury of the United States federal government. Established by an Act of Congress in 1789 to manage government revenue,[3] the Treasury prints all paper currency and mints all coins in circulation through the Bureau of Engraving and Printing and the United States Mint, respectively; collects all federal taxes through the Internal Revenue Service; manages U.S. government debt instruments; licenses and supervises banks and thrift institutions; and advises the legislative and executive branches on matters of fiscal policy.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #16)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:41 PM

19. And says absolutely nothing about the IRS

the Treasury Dept., the mechanics of collecting taxes, nor administering such matters.

Further, the 16th Amendment, which specifically authorized the income tax, states:

The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.


Again, absolutely no mention, and no power, over whatever agency the Executive Branch was to come up with to implement it.

Yes, an Act of Congress created the Treasury Dept. Duh! Every Executive Dept was created by an Act of Congress. And NO, that's not why the Senate (not the Congress) can confirm or not confirm the Treasury Secretary. That power is specifically in the Constitution and applies to almost all Executive departments via The Appointments Clause, Article II, Section 2, Clause 2 of the United States Constitution.

I think I am done discussing the Constitution with you.

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Response to dumbcat (Reply #19)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:47 PM

22. ......

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Response to dumbcat (Reply #3)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:39 PM

18. It's not the point, but... Trump would not veto the end of the IRS.

He'd love it. Havoc.

Plus he would never want to tell his base that he's the one who STOPPED the end of the IRS.

But as others have said, the tweet isn't about doing it, it's about who is answerable to whom. Congress created the IRS, Congress has the authority (if not the will or the votes) to un-create it.

It's just a tweet, don't expect enumeration of the finer points.

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Response to thesquanderer (Reply #18)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:46 PM

21. [Sigh]

But as others have said, the tweet isn't about doing it, it's about who is answerable to whom. Congress created the IRS, Congress has the authority (if not the will or the votes) to un-create it.


And the point I am trying to make is that the IRS is no different than any other Executive Agency or Dept created by Congress. Given the votes to override a veto, Congress has the authority to un-create anything it created. The IRS is no different than the Dept of Energy. The IRS is no more answerable to Congress than almost any other Executive Agency. (The FCC is a little different.)

I give up.

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Response to dumbcat (Reply #21)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 08:07 PM

31. re: "Congress has the authority to un-create anything it created. "

Exactly. Which means we're both making the same point, so I don't know why it sounds like we're disagreeing or why you're sighing!

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Response to dumbcat (Reply #3)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:56 PM

25. If Congress sent Trump a bill abolishing the IRS, Trump would sign it in an instant

Trump's base hates the IRS and the Federal Reserve. If Trump did anything to eliminate either of those entities, all over America there would be irrepressible spontaneous demonstrations where workers would march out of factories and offices and parade through the streets with banners voicing their gratitude to Trump for the new, happy life which his wise leadership would have bestowed upon us.

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Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 05:48 PM

6. If Chump does this, our economy will collapse overnight

I guess Steve Bannon and Stephen Miller will get exactly what they wanted - to see the entire government blow up.

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Response to FakeNoose (Reply #6)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 05:54 PM

9. go back and read the OP.... it isn't meant literally

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Response to Takket (Reply #9)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 06:12 PM

11. No harm done, I didn't mean it either

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Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:31 PM

17. Moscow Mitch won't let that happen. nt

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Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:50 PM

23. I wonder if the Dems might consider just filing for a writ of mandamus. Does anyone know of any

reason why this might not be feasible?

https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/mandamus

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Response to alwaysinasnit (Reply #23)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:58 PM

28. Trump would simply wipe his ass on it and send it back

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Response to jmowreader (Reply #28)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 08:06 PM

30. I don't believe tRump would have any direct power to wipe his ass with it. If it is filed in

federal court, the head of the IRS would have to respond. Possibly DOJ would try to object/intervene, but if I am not mistaken, the applicable statute does say that the IRS "shall" release the returns to the applicable party (House Ways and Means committee). Or am I totally out in left field?

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Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:57 PM

26. They should abolish it. 3 Flat taxes and a sales tax is the only way to raise the amounts we need.

Everyone hates what works.

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Response to oldsoftie (Reply #26)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 10:46 PM

32. That's been a Republican pipe dream for decades.

A progressive tax like we have now is the most common tax system used in developed countries around the world. A flat tax is based upon a fantasy that a millionaire and a minimum wage earner can both afford to pay the same tax percentage their salary towards the public treasury.

Flat taxes would mean a windfall to the wealthy and business and investment companies. Wage earners would get taxed on every dollar earned, but for wealthy people who earn a living in dividends, capital gains and other investment income, their money is generally exempt from tax.

Sure, it sounds fair, but the flat tax impacts lower income workers much harder. If a household making $1,000,000 was taxed at 10% the would be $100,000 in taxes due and the the they could still enjoy a posh livestyle without selling off grandma's antique rocker. A household making $10,000, would suffer a severe financial crisis after paying their "fair" 10% tax of $1,000. The working class family now has less income to the purchase the same amount of goods as before.

Do some more investigating on this topic and you'll see why Dems don't support a flat tax.

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Response to procon (Reply #32)

Wed Apr 17, 2019, 07:27 AM

33. Thats why i said THREE levels of it. And those other developed countries also use a sales tax.

Nothing proposed by any of the candidates so far will raise nearly enough money to pay for the programs we all discuss here. Nothing. We see huge numbers followed by "over 10 yrs". we all know any projection of income or savings over 10 yrs NEVER materializes as projected. We know how big our economy is, so we'd know pretty close what a sales tax would bring in.
Not to mention finally taxing all the hidden income from millions of workers.

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Response to oldsoftie (Reply #33)

Wed Apr 17, 2019, 07:32 AM

34. If you have three "levels" then it's not flat.

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #34)

Wed Apr 17, 2019, 07:38 AM

35. Well, its flat in that there are no write offs, shelters, etc. Easy to do your taxes.

You make between X & Y, you pay Z. Between A & B, you pay C
And start after a "minimum income" is hit. Just for example, anything over 20k begins your tax.
And we still need a sales tax on top of it.
I'm just going with what works & is working elsewhere. Because what we currently do isnt working.

As i said before, NO plan put forth by ANY of the candidates will raise nearly enough money. Not even AOCs "over 10M" tax.

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Response to oldsoftie (Reply #35)

Wed Apr 17, 2019, 07:48 AM

36. This is the problem I have with conservatives...

They conflate "flat tax" with "simple tax".

You can have incredibly complex tax rules and then charge a single tax rate.

You can have no exemptions at all and charge 10 different tax rates.

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #36)

Wed Apr 17, 2019, 07:55 AM

37. Well, its 3, not 10. Thats much easier! But thats what i've got. What do you think should be done?

And any idea of the actual revenues it would bring?
The biggest issue i see is that we all look to Europe & the Nordic countries for many of the programs we want, but we're not willing to fund it using the systems that those countries use.
Studies have shown that, while people dont want to pay taxes, they're much more willing to pay if they think everyone ELSE is paying too.

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Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 07:58 PM

27. How much from these motherfuckers is America going to take?

I would have thought we'd had enough of this shit by now

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