Talk about beating a dead horse! Yes, that is the IRS position before the courts as to why it can regulate and control tax return preparers. The district court properly struck down the IRS attempt to control tax preparers as being outside its authority under law. Congress has never authorized the IRS to control tax return preparers, and frankly it is a truly bad idea. Why should the IRS be permitted to regulate and control tax return preparers that are supposed to represent taxpayers who are truly adversarial to the IRS?
In an attempt to show that they have authority to regulate tax return preparers, the IRS argued before the appellate courts yesterday that a law from the 1880s concerning the regulation of representatives of the people who lost their horses horses when they were killed by the government gives every government agency the right to regulate and control any paid person that has anything to do with the agency. That would include tax return preparers. The Obama administration is presenting this ludicrous argument in a continued attempt to expand government and the authority of the Executive branch of government.
Our Constitution establishes that Congress makes the laws and the Executive administers the laws. Unfortunately the Executive branch keeps usurping Congress’s power, even if it means beating a dead horse. It would be very simple for Congress to amend the Internal Revenue Code to authorize the IRS to regulate paid tax return preparers. It could be as simple as one sentence. Congress has not done this and in my opinion should not do this, nevertheless the IRS is spending millions of dollars of taxpayers money to fight for this nonstatutory expansion of its authority.
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