By Bethany Blankley [The Center Square contributor] –
U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Florida, has introduced a bill to ban the Internal Revenue Service from acquiring ammunition.
The Disarm the IRS act would ban the agency responsible for tax enforcement from purchasing ammunition after the agency already has stockpiled more than 5 million rounds.
This year alone, the IRS has purchased $725,000 worth of ammunition, Gaetz said.
“I’m not against stockpiling ammunition, but you shouldn’t have to be a D.C. accountant to do it; you ought to be a mechanic in Pensacola,” he told Fox News. The Biden administration wants to “disarm Americans, open the border, empty the prisons,” and “still collect your taxes” with $725,000 worth of ammunition to do it, he said.
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The bill would need to pass the House Ways and Means Committee before it’s considered by the full House. Republican Reps. Jeff Duncan of S.C., Paul Gosar of Arizona, and Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia cosponsored the bill.
“Why is Biden trying to weaponize the IRS?” Duncan tweeted. Rep. Gosar tweeted they needed to disarm “this band of highwaymen and stop them from taking our money under the threat of violence.”
According to a Government Accountability Office report, in 2018, there were 2,148 law enforcement officers working for the IRS’s Criminal Investigation Division. They were armed with 4,461 weapons, including 15 fully automatic weapons and more than 5 million rounds of ammunition.
The division investigates “potential criminal violations of the Internal Revenue Code and related financial crimes in a manner that fosters confidence in the tax system and compliance with the law.”
“The American system of taxation is based on the premise that all income is taxable (which includes illegally earned income),” the IRS states. “In many instances, proving that a taxpayer willfully attempted to hide income from the Federal Government is an integral part of proving other criminal activity including fraud, money laundering or Bank Secrecy Act violations. Criminal Investigation continues to fulfill the important role of helping to ensure the integrity and fairness of our nations’ tax system.”
Two years later, the 2018 stockpile increased more. According to a 2020 OpenTheBooks.com report, “The militarization of the U.S. Executive Agencies” included the IRS having 2,159 special agents, the spending of $21.3 million on guns, ammunition and military-style equipment between fiscal years 2006 and 2019, which included a stockpile of more than 4,500 guns.
Adam Andrzejewski, Open the Books’ CEO and founder, told The Center Square, “After grabbing legal power, bureaucrats are amassing firepower. It’s time to scale back the federal arsenal. Just who are the federal agencies preparing to battle?”
According to the report, 103 federal agencies outside of the Department of Defense and 76 administrative agencies spent $2.7 billion and $110.6 million, respectively, on guns, ammunition and military-style equipment between fiscal years 2015 and 2019.
The report notes that there are more federal officers with arrest and firearm authority with the IRS (200,000) than U.S. Marines (182,000).
“Our data shows that the federal government has become a gun show that never adjourns. Taxpayers need to tell Washington that police powers belong primarily to cities and states, not the feds,” Andrzejewski said.
About the Author: Bethany Blankley is a writer at the Center Square, Patheos/Hedgerow, political analyst and former press secretary at Capitol Hill / NY / WDC. Follow Bethany on Twitter @BethanyBlankley.