Senate Minority Whip John Thune rips Dem proposal to expand IRS, snoop into bank accounts

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Former Bush 43 Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove discusses the House Democrats’ spending, 2022 midterm elections, Biden’s administration and  rising inflation.

Senate Minority Whip John Thune, R-S.D., on Tuesday slammed a new proposal from Democrats that would raise to $10,000 the threshold for allowing the Internal Revenue Service to demand banks to report account transactions. 

Democrats have previously proposed a $600 trigger point.

Speaking during a press conference with other Republican senators who also condemned the proposal, Thune described "the Democrats' tax-and-spending spree" as "a horrible vision" for America's future and paid special attention to their IRS proposition.

"This proposal, which would double the size of the IRS – literally double the size of the IRS – and allow them to snoop into every American's bank transactions … is something that is so sweeping we've never seen anything like it before, where you're literally talking about an IRS dragnet across the bank accounts of every single American," said Thune.

"Even if it's $10,000, it's still going to capture thousands, millions of Americans," Thune said.

REPUBLICANS PUSH BACK ON YELLEN'S ARGUMENT THAT $600 REPORTING REQUIREMENT IS TARGETED AT RICH TAX CHEATS

Thune went on to note how virtually every American with a bank account would be swept up into the potential surveillance.

"This is one of many really bad ideas in the Democrat proposal, but this one in particular needs to be killed for all the reasons that have been mentioned, and not the least of which is the huge invasion into Americans' privacy," added Thune, who also questioned the wisdom of expanding the power of federal agency that "has had a lot of problems keeping information secret."

Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., later echoed his colleague, describing the proposal as "crazy" and something that would make Chinese President Xi Jinping proud.

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Jessica Anderson, executive director of the conservative Heritage Action, recently condemned comments by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen's in defense of the proposal. Yellen said it has been "seriously mischaracterized" and "involves no reporting of individual transactions."

"It’s unfortunate that Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen claims this new IRS proposal would only be implemented to stop billionaire tax dodgers," Anderson told FOX Business. "In reality, any American with over $600 in their bank account or $600 in annual transactions would be left vulnerable to being snooped on by the IRS."

"After years of politically motivated leaks and hacks, why should we trust the IRS not to snoop on Americans or silence political opponents?" she said. "The truth is, the Biden administration is weaponizing the IRS against anyone who uses the American financial system, and now the Secretary of the Treasury is coming out in support of this radical proposal."

FOX Business' Tyler Olson and Kelly Laco contributed to this report.

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