New York City street.SPENCER PLATT / AFP
I am the biggest skeptic of politicians who see in reducing taxes for the rich the solution to all problems. In fact, the claim that tax cuts can work magic is a terrific example of a zombie idea, an idea that lives on, despite the overwhelming evidence against it, because its survival pays off to wealthy donors.
But even I was taken by surprise that Republicans negotiating a potential infrastructure bill ruled out paying for it in part by giving the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) more resources to pursue tax evasion. This is something very important. The Treasury Department believes that the “fiscal gap,” taxes due but not paid, exceeds $ 500 billion annually; some estimates give a much higher figure. And the Biden administration proposes giving the IRS enough resources to reduce this gap, as a way to help pay for investment in America’s future.