Efforts to pass a bill that would allow the IRS to deny travel rights to U.S. citizens who the feds merely claim owe $50,000 or more in delinquent taxes represents a de facto move to revoke the citizenship of Americans without due process and in complete violation of the Constitution.
Thanks to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a recently passed Senate bill, the suitably Orwellian entitled ‘Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act’, includes a provision that allows the federal government to revoke passports of Americans accused of owing back taxes.
The legislation now moves to the Congress where, despite a Republican majority, the IRS provision is expected to be retained in the final version of the bill because it will raise an estimated $750 million dollars over ten years.
“There is no requirement that the tax payer be guilty of or even charged with tax evasion, fraud, or any criminal offense — only that the citizen is alleged to owe the IRS back taxes of $50,000 or more,” reports the Daily Economist.
Empowering the IRS to deny fundamental rights on a whim is completely illegal and unconstitutional.
“There are also numerous Supreme Court precedents protecting these same rights,” writes Jack Swint. “Furthermore, the law appears to violate Article I, Section 9, paragraph 3 of the United States Constitution, which forbids “Bills of Attainder”, which are laws providing for the punishment of an individual without benefit of judicial process.”
“It takes away your right to enter or exit the country based upon a non-judicial IRS determination that you owe taxes,” Constitutional Attorney Angel Reyes told FOX Business. “It’s a scary thought that our congressional representatives want to give the IRS the power to detain US citizens over taxes, which could very well be in dispute.”
What’s next? If the feds can bar you from leaving the country merely by claiming you have committed some infraction without having to provide any evidence, the prospect of Americans being abducted and interned indefinitely under the National Defense Authorization Act with a similar absence of due process is just around the corner.
Will citizens have their drivers license cancelled if the state claims they are behind on their property taxes? How about the government working with big banks to suspend credit cards if an individual is accused of avoiding inheritance or capital gains tax? Will similar punitive measures of punishment be enforced for Americans who attempt to avoid mandatory government health care?
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Presumably because the provision was introduced by Harry Reid, there is a noticeable absence of uproar from the left even though the bill would achieve in one fell swoop what civil libertarians have fought against during the course of over ten years of the ‘war on terror’ – the ability of the federal government to arbitrarily strip Americans of the inherent rights associated with their citizenship status.
While U.S. citizens will be treated as guilty until proven innocent with regard to tax delinquency under this bill, individuals and corporations that have avoided hundreds of millions of dollars in taxes continue to escape any scrutiny whatsoever from the IRS.
Forget $50,000 dollars, people like Warren Buffett owe nearly one billion dollars in back taxes going back a decade, but I doubt you’ll see Buffett being apprehended by the TSA on his next business trip if this bill passes Congress.
This has nothing to do with cracking down on large scale tax criminals and everything to do with greasing the skids for the federal government to randomly deny Americans the right to mobility, effectively revoking their citizenship, merely on hearsay alone.