February 1, 2023

Overhauling the National Tax System, Eliminating Oil Sales to China, and Criminalizing Late Abortion Attempts

To rescind certain balances made available to the Internal Revenue Service (HR 23) – Introduced by Rep. Adrian Smith (R-NE) on Jan. 9, this bill would rescind funds allocated to the Internal Revenue Service by the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022. The bill is designed to “defund” specific enforcement activities, operational support, enhancement to the e-file tax return system, and allocations to the U.S. Tax Court and other Department of the Treasury tax agencies. The bill passed in the House on Jan. 9 and has moved to the Senate, 

Protecting America’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve from China Act (HR 22) – This bill would prohibit the Department of Energy (DOE) from selling crude oil to any entity under the ownership, control, or influence of the Chinese Communist Party. The bill was introduced on Jan. 9 by Rep. Cathy Anne McMorris Rogers (R-WA). It passed in the House on Jan. 12 and is currently under consideration in the Senate.

Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act (HR 26) – An example of one of many abortion-related bills introduced by the House in the new 118th Congressional Session, this Act would require healthcare practitioners to exercise the proper degree of care in cases where a fetus survives an attempted abortion – including ensuring the neonate is immediately admitted to a hospital. Failure to provide such care or failure of others to report the crime would be subject to a fine and/or up to five years in prison. Furthermore, anyone who intentionally kills the neonate would be subject to prosecution for murder. However, this bill would bar criminal prosecution of the birth mother in these circumstances and permit her to bring civil action for these violations if perpetrated by others. The bill was introduced by Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO) on Jan. 9 and is under assignment in a House committee.

Fair Tax Act of 2023 (HR 25) – This legislation was introduced in the House by Rep. Buddy Carter (R-GA) on Jan. 9. It is currently assigned to committee for consideration.  The purpose of the bill is to replace the current income tax system (including payroll, estate, and gift taxes) with a national consumption sales tax on goods and services. Instead of paying the current 10 percent to 37 percent tax rates based on income bracket, as well as eliminating all deductions and credits, U.S. residents would pay a minimum 23 percent federal tax (in addition to state and local taxes) on all purchases, regardless of income bracket. Exemptions would include property or services purchased for business, export, investment, or state government functions. The flat rate would essentially tax a higher percentage of income from low earners while high-income earners would have more assets available for savings and investment that would not be taxable. Each state would bear the responsibility for collecting and remitting this federal sales tax to the Treasury.