U.S.A. — U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) is proposing legislation to take firearms away from the Internal Revenue Service, and a major gun rights group quickly threw its support behind the plan.
The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms issued a statement in reaction to Ernst’s proposed “Why Does the IRS Have Guns Act” observing, “That’s really a very good question.”
“Why has the IRS spent millions of dollars on weapons and ammunition since the start of the coronavirus pandemic three years ago,” wondered CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “According to a published report, the agency spent $2.3 million on ammunition, another $1.2 million on ballistic shields, $243,000 on body armor, nearly $475,000 on Smith & Wesson rifles and $463,000 on Beretta tactical shotguns.
“One has to wonder whether IRS agents are working for the taxpayers, or preparing to go to war against them,” he mused. “The worst thing people should ever face from the IRS is an audit, not a firing squad.”
Ernst announced her legislative proposal in a news release which offered some details about her proposal. The bill would:
- Prohibit the IRS from buying, receiving, or storing guns and ammunition,
- Transfer all firearms and ammunition currently in the IRS’ possession to the General Services Administration,
- Auction off these guns and ammo to federally-licensed firearms retailers and devote proceeds to deficit reduction, and
- Relocate the IRS Criminal Investigation Division within the Justice Department.
According to the Washington Examiner, Ernst said, “It’s concerning how the Biden administration has worked to expand the size of the IRS, and even more concerning that the IRS is using taxpayer dollars to arms its agents… I’m working to disarm the IRS to prevent any further weaponization of this federal agency. It’s time to end this abuse of power and tax dollars.”
Back in May, the New York Post published a report about IRS spending on guns and ammunition. The newspaper said the agency had spent $10 million since 2020 to stockpile its arsenal.
“Since 2006, the agency has spent $35.2 million – adjusted for inflation – on guns, ammo and military-style equipment, according to OpenTheBooks,” the Post reported.
Prior to 2020, the Post revealed, the IRS “had stockpiled 5 million rounds of ammunition for its 2,159 special agents. At the time, the agency owned 4,500 firearms, including 621 pump action and semi-automatic shotguns, 539 semi-automatic rifles and 15 submachine guns.”
CCRKBA’s Gottlieb observed, “American taxpayers feel intimidated enough by the IRS without facing the prospect of armed agents coming to our doors. What is truly alarming is that this has been going on for years, at the cost of more than $35 million since 2006. However, over the past couple of years, it appears the Biden administration has literally weaponized the agency, and the American public should not be amused. Disarming the IRS will make us all feel safer, and we’re delighted Sen. Ernst is willing to do something about it.”
According to a May 1 report at Open the Books, in addition to the guns, ammunition, body armor and ballistic shields, the IRS also bought 3,000 units of “optics compatible tactical holsters for weapons with optical sights and weapons lighting systems.” Open the Books said the IRS is not alone.
“Since 2006,” the report revealed, “103 rank-and-file agencies outside of the Department of Defense (DOD) spent $3.7 billion on guns, ammunition, and military-style equipment (inflation adjusted to CPI). 27 of those agencies are traditional law enforcement under the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
“However,” the story added, “76 agencies are pencil-pushing, regulatory agencies, i.e. Environment Protection Agency (EPA), Social Security Administration (SSA), Veterans Affairs (VA), Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Health and Human Services (HHS), Department of Transportation, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and many others.”
This seems like a lot of hardware spread throughout the federal bureaucracy, to what end? As Gottlieb has often observed, this is still the United States, not a police state.
In her press release, Sen. Ernst remarked, “The taxman is fully loaded at the expense of the taxpayer,” Ernst said. “As the Biden administration has worked to expand the size of the IRS, any further weaponization of this federal agency against hardworking Americans and small businesses is a grave concern. I’m working to disarm the IRS and return these dollars to address reckless spending in Washington.”
About Dave Workman
Dave Workman is a senior editor at TheGunMag.com and Liberty Park Press, author of multiple books on the Right to Keep & Bear Arms, and formerly an NRA-certified firearms instructor.