A pro-Trump group organizing a DC rally for Jan. 6 defendants lost its tax-exempt status – but is still claiming donations are tax-deductible

Matt Brynard helping to move a statue of Donald Trump.
Matt Braynard (L) helps artist Tommy Zegan (R) move his statue of former President Donald Trump to a van during the Conservative Political Action Conference on February 27, 2021 in Orlando, Florida.

  • Matt Braynard worked as a data analyst on the 2016 Trump campaign.
  • His group, Look Ahead America, was founded in 2017 as a nonprofit.
  • But the IRS revoked the group’s tax-exempt status after it repeatedly failed to disclose spending.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

A group founded by a former Trump campaign staffer that is organizing a rally this month on behalf of January 6 defendants is soliciting “tax-deductible” contributions despite losing its tax-exempt status last year.

According to its website, Look Ahead America is a “non-profit organization” founded by Matt Braynard, a former data analyst on the 2016 Trump campaign. Although ostensibly “non-partisan,” it has clear and avowed sympathies: On September 18, it is organizing what it calls a “#JusticeForJ6” rally at the US Capitol, conflating those arrested for taking part in the pro-Trump January 6 riot with “political prisoners.”

At least 638 people have been arrested and charged with crimes related to the January 6 insurrection, when rioters sought to prevent the congressional certification of President Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 election. But while claims of mass voter fraud have been readily debunked, Braynard, like others, has raised a substantial sum of money to prove that it existed.

Donation link.
Look Ahead America falsely tells potential supporters that their donations are “tax-deductible.”

In the weeks after the election, Braynard raised more than $675,000 on a Christian fundraising platform to pursue amateur audits of the November vote. That campaign left him with what he described as a “surplus” of $84,000, which would go toward a “relaunch of Look Ahead America.” None of the money would benefit Braynard personally, he insisted. “That should be clear on the public 990 we file at the end of this year,” he wrote in a January update, referring to the mandatory spending disclosures that nonprofits are supposed to file with the IRS.

A month later, the group had already raised another $75,000, Axios reported, with part of the money going to a new treasurer who was said to be resolving its issues with the IRS.

On its homepage, Look Ahead America – now boasting of a dozen-strong leadership team – is asking for more money, saying it is needed to help “organize and guide patriotic citizens in lobbying their state legislatures and local governments on America First initiatives.”

Despite no longer enjoying tax-exempt status, however, potential supporters are promised that their donations will constitute a “tax-deductible contribution.”

Visitors can also purchase copies of “Otoya: A Literary Journal of the New Nationalism,” edited by Braynard. The magazine’s cover features an image of Otoya Yamaguchi, a member of the Japanese far-right who assassinated the head of his country’s Socialist Party in 1960 – and who is today an inspiration for extremists here in the United States, according to the Institute for Research and Education on Human Rights.

‘The answer to that is no’

Despite promising one, Bryanard’s group has never actually filed a 990 form, that would, among other things, reveal just how much he and others are paid. After three years of failing to disclose such spending, the IRS automatically revokes a nonprofit’s tax-exempt status; for Look Ahead America, that happened in May 2020.

Braynard told BuzzFeed he’s working on it. He reapplied for exempt status in January 2021, he said in August and was still waiting to hear back.

On Twitter, however, he suggested that already should have happened. And the former Trump staffer event insisted that his group can continue to operate as a nonprofit – and receive tax-free contributions – despite losing its tax-exempt status. “Per IRS rules, we are allowed to operate as a [501(c)(3)] while our reinstatement status is pending. We expect it to be resolved this month,” he wrote in July.

Is that true, though?

“The answer to that is no,” Rick Cohen, chief operating officer at the National Council of Nonprofits, told Insider. “From the time their status as a 501(c)(3) is revoked until such time that it is reinstated, donations are not deductible.”

As of August 9, Look Ahead America has still not been reinstated, per the most recent IRS list of active tax-exempt organizations in Washington, DC. And until it is, the IRS too says it should not be acting like it has been.

According to the agency, there is no exception: “a section 501(c)(3) that loses its tax-exempt status can’t receive tax-deductible contributions.”

Neither Braynard nor Look Ahead America responded to requests for comment.

Have a news tip? Email this reporter: cdavis@insider.com

Read the original article on Business Insider

Robert Mercer and Renaissance Technologies insiders to pay as much as $7 billion to the IRS in one of the largest federal tax settlements in history

Robert Mercer
Billionaire Robert Mercer has donated millions to right-wing causes.

  • The hedge fund Renaissance Technologies settled with the IRS over a longstanding tax dispute.
  • Per the WSJ, the settlement could total $7 billion, making it one of the largest federal tax settlements in history.
  • Political megadonors Robert Mercer and James Simons will both make payments in the settlement.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Billionaire hedge fund manager James Simons, GOP megadonor Robert Mercer, and other insiders at hedge fund Renaissance Technologies will pay the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) up to $7 billion to settle one of the largest federal tax disputes in history, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

The sum will account for back taxes, interest, and penalties. Simons, who founded Renaissance and is considered a pioneer for his quantitative approach to investing, will pay an extra $670 million, per the WSJ.

Renaissance, one of the best-performing hedge funds in history, announced the settlement in a letter to investors that said it resolved the “longstanding dispute” with the IRS over the firm’s tax treatment of some transactions that occured from 2005-2015. Those transactions were under its Medallion fund, which The Journal reported manages $15 billion and only includes the money of employees and some family and friends.

“Renaissance’s board eventually concluded that the interests of our investors from the relevant period would be best served by agreeing to this resolution with the IRS, rather than risking a worse outcome,” the letter said. The letter also specified that the board of directors of Renaissance during the relevant years, in addition to some other investors, would owe payments in the settlement.

That includes Mercer, who served as co-CEO at Renaissance until stepping down in 2017 during backlash related to his political activism. Mercer was one of the most prominent conservative megadonors to Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign for president, donating around $25 million through various GOP efforts, Insider’s Debanjali Bose reported.

Meanwhile, Simons is a longtime donor to Democratic candidates. Simons and his wife gave a combined total of $26 million to Democrats in the 2020 election cycle, CNBC reported.

The letter did not specify over what timeline the settlement will be paid out and said more details will be provided at a later date.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Some families haven’t gotten Biden’s monthly child tax credit or stimulus payments. The White House just launched a new website to fix that.

covid 19 relief bill child credit
The Biden administration on Wednesday launched a new mobile-friendly online portal so the lowest-income Americans who don’t usually pay taxes can claim the child tax credit or missing direct payments.

  • The Biden administration and Code for America launched a new child tax credit sign-up portal.
  • It comes two months after an earlier version of the site faced heavy criticism from advocates.
  • The website includes a simplified tax form to make it easier for families to file.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

The Biden administration on Wednesday launched a new mobile-friendly online portal so the lowest-income Americans who don’t usually pay taxes can claim the child tax credit or missing direct payments.

The new sign-up tool, GetCTC.org, was rolled out by the Treasury Department, the White House, and Code for America, a nonprofit tech organization. It’s designed to ensure families can tap into monthly federal payments, along with any of the three pandemic relief stimulus checks they’re eligible for.

The portal is available in English and Spanish, and can be used on smartphones. Families are required to file a simplified tax return to get the money.

For six months, families can get a $300 monthly benefit per child age 5 and under, amounting to $3,600 this year. The measure from President Joe Biden’s stimulus law provides $250 each month per kid age 6 and 17, totaling $3,000. Half of the cash benefit will come as a tax refund next year.

It comes two months after the Biden administration rolled out an earlier version of the website critics assailed as unusable because it was only available in English and accessible on desktop computers. Advocates and Democrats pressed the White House to revamp the site ahead of the first round of child tax credit payments on July 15 so it would achieve its goal to cut child poverty by up to half.

“No question, you’re doing something this major, this quickly, there’s gonna be wrinkles and bumps in the road,” Gene Sperling, a senior White House official, said at a press conference. “We’re as committed as we can be to smoothing them out as quickly as we can this year and certainly as we extend it for years and years to come.”

Sperling said the administration would attempt to make it available in more languages down the road.

The measure has seen some early signs of success: The first month of payments kept three million children out of poverty and helped feed two million kids in July, per emerging research. Almost 70% of families either spent the money or used it to pay down debt.

A majority of Congressional Democrats back making the bulked-up child tax credit permanent, though they may face concerns from moderates in their ranks about its price tag. The White House is calling for keeping it until 2025.

The next child tax credit is scheduled to be issued on Sept. 15.

Read the original article on Business Insider

It’s starting to look like Republicans aren’t going to support the bipartisan infrastructure deal

Mitch McConnell senate republicans
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell speaks at a press conference alongside Senate Republicans.

  • It appears that Republicans won’t ultimately support the bipartisan infrastructure deal.
  • At least two GOP senators who signed on are criticizing an ensuing Democrat-only spending bill that will move alongside it.
  • Mitch McConnell hasn’t said whether he backs the $579 billion agreement.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Senate Republicans are mostly keeping their cards close to the vest when it comes to the $579 billion bipartisan infrastructure agreement.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell hasn’t thrown his support behind the package yet, even though it was negotiated by a handful of Senate Republicans that included Mitt Romney if Utah and Susan Collins of Maine. The framework is concentrated on physical items like roads and bridges. It also contains funding for broadband internet, a major priority for both parties.

There doesn’t appear to be a lot of enthusiasm among Republicans to back the agreement yet, which could partly stem from the fact that negotiators are still turning the blueprint into a formal bill. Democrats are pressing to finalize the details this week, but Republicans say a bill won’t be ready until next week.

A total of 11 GOP senators signed onto the bipartisan agreement, which would be enough for the plan to clear the 60-vote threshold if every Democratic senator voted for it as well.

But some have signaled they could withdraw their support given that Democrats are poised to advance a separate $3.5 trillion party-line package through reconciliation in the coming weeks. That legislative pathway requires Democrats to stick together in an evenly-divided Senate over united Republican opposition – and both measures would be approved on parallel tracks.

‘This deal is troublesome to me,” said Sen. Jerry Moran of Kansas, a GOP sponsor, on Wednesday.

Others say they don’t want the bipartisan deal’s fate to be tied to the Democrat-only plan. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has insisted the House will only approve a bipartisan bill once the Senate clears a party-line infrastructure bill. “They certainly can’t be connected,” Sen. Lindsay Graham, another Republican sponsor, told reporters on Wednesday.

Republicans have also started criticizing the funding mechanisms, potentially making it harder for more Republicans to support an agreement.

Some experts are skeptical that the funding provisions of the bipartisan deal – which include repurposing coronavirus relief funds and unspent federal unemployment aid – will fully pay for itself. Howard Gleckman, a tax expert at the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, called it “pixie dust” in a recent blog post.

The GOP is seizing on that given their opposition to growing the national debt. Sen. John Cornyn of Texas said in a Tuesday interview that Republicans want “just to make sure the pay-fors are responsible, actually real and not illusory,” he said.

Sen. John Thune, the second-ranked Senate Republican, told reporters on Tuesday that a plan that’s fully paid for would be a “prerequisite for a lot of Republicans to support it.”

A day later, Thune said that the $3.5 trillion spending deal could “put downward pressure on Republican votes” in the weeks ahead.

“I don’t think it helps. We have members who truly do want to get an infrastructure bill,” he said.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Parents could get a $300 check this week from the government thanks to the revamped child tax credit

Joe Biden
President Joe Biden.

  • The IRS will start sending advance child tax credit payments on July 15.
  • Monthly payments for families will be issued until December, with the remainder sent at tax time.
  • It amounts up to $300 per child, depending on the age.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

The federal government is only three days away from kicking off what’s essentially a new child allowance program in the America.

It stems from a revamped child tax credit in President Joe Biden’s March stimulus law that widened the credit’s reach to families with no tax obligations, and bulked up the amount. Families can get a monthly $300 check for children ages 5 and under, and $250 for each child between 6 and 17.

The IRS noted that most families will receive the payments without having to do anything, and they should receive them through direct deposit, a paper check, or a debit card – similar to the three stimulus payments that the federal government sent over the past year.

Half of the amount will be divided into monthly payments issued from July until December. The remaining half will be provided at tax time next year. It will total $3,000 for kids between 6 and 17, and $3,600 for children under age 6.

Last month, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) began notifying 36 million American families that they could be eligible to receive the monthly child tax credit.

Here’s when the IRS will distribute payments:

  • July 15
  • August 13
  • September 15
  • October 15
  • November 15
  • December 15

The White House estimates that 90% of families are eligible to get the credit. Researchers say it has the potential to put a major dent in child poverty as well.

Still, the IRS is scrambling to reach the lowest-income families who didn’t previously qualify for the child tax credit. At least 2.3 million children could be excluded from the child allowance, per a Treasury Department estimate.

A strong majority of Democrats in both the House and Senate are pushing to make the child tax credit changes permanent. Biden’s sprawling infrastructure package would extend it until 2025. After that, Congress would need to renew it.

“We must use this moment to pass the American Family Act and permanently expand and improve the child tax credit by increasing the benefit to families and providing payments monthly,” Chair of the House Appropriations Committee Rosa DeLauro said in a February statement. “Children and families must be able to count on this benefit long after the end of this pandemic.”

Still, some moderate Senate Democrats may push for cuts to the measure. At least one Democratic senator has expressed unease with checks going to households earning six figures.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Kevin McCarthy mistakenly attributes a 19-year-old’s poster promoting the child tax credit to the IRS

Kevin McCarthy
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California.

  • Kevin McCarthy criticized the IRS for wasting taxpayer dollars on a poster promoting the child tax credit.
  • But 19-year-old college student Tobin Stone actually made the poster – not the IRS.
  • Democrats are pushing for an expansion of the credit while GOP members largely oppose it.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy blamed the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for wasting taxpayer dollars on a poster promoting the child tax credit. But the IRS actually didn’t make the poster – a 19-year-old college student did.

In a now-deleted Facebook post on Wednesday, McCarthy posted a photo of a poster that college student Tobin Stone created promoting the child tax credit, which is a monthly credit given to families with children. McCarthy attributed the poster to the IRS, though, and criticized the agency for wasting taxpayer dollars on a “government handout.”

“Infuriating,” McCarthy wrote. “The IRS is literally spending taxpayer money to advertise a government handout. This is welfare without the work requirements.”

Stone, a political science and public policy student at Albright College in Pennsylvania, told Forbes he’s been a “big fan” of the child tax credit ever since it was introduced, which is why he created the poster that he first tweeted out in April.

McCarthy has not yet publicly commented on mistakenly attributing the poster to the IRS, but some Democrats were quick to notice the minority leader’s error. Rep. Don Beyer of Virginia, for example, wrote on Twitter that the “IRS had nothing to do with [the poster], but the enhanced Child Tax Credit WILL put money in the pockets of working families, no thanks to @GOPLeader who voted against it.”

Beyer’s is referring to President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion stimulus law, which increased the child tax credit’s amount to $3,600 per child age 5 and under, and $3,000 for every kid between 6 and 17. It gives families the option to receive a monthly payment of $250 or $300 depending on each child’s age, and individuals earning below $75,000 and couples making under $150,000 qualify for the full checks.

Not a single Republican voted for Biden’s stimulus law, but even so, some Republicans, including McCarthy, have been promoting elements of it.

With regard to the child tax credit, Insider’s Joseph Zeballos-Roig reported earlier this month that some centrist senators might stand in the way of a permanent expansion of the credit, which 41 Democratic senators had previously called for.

But Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet, one of the architects of the credit, told Insider he had spoken to some moderates and continues to stress the benefits it will have on American families.

“It’s going to be an amazing moment in modern America where people actually see themselves and their families benefiting dramatically from something that we’ve done in Washington DC,” Bennet said in an interview. “It’s going to make a huge difference to people.”

McCarthy’s office did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

Read the original article on Business Insider

A bipartisan Senate group wants to fund an IRS crackdown on ‘tax cheats’ in nascent infrastructure proposal

Angus King
Sen. Angus King (I-ME).

  • Senators on both sides of the aisle agree that the IRS should be funded in new spending.
  • Sen. Angus King told Insider “there’s a lot of money we’re leaving on the table” and he understands “going after tax cheats” is part of a deal.
  • Sen. Rob Portman, a prominent GOP lawmaker, said a $40 billion investment would go a long way.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

As bipartisan infrastructure talks plod on, funneling money to beef up IRS enforcement looks like it’ll be sticking around.

Sen. Angus King, an independent of Maine who caucuses with the Democrats, told Insider on Tuesday that deciding what pay-fors make it into the final package is difficult – but suggested that funding for IRS enforcement will remain.

“I understand going after tax cheats is part of it,” King said. “There’s a lot of money we’re leaving on the table right now.”

The bipartisan Senate group of 10 – evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats – is working on a $1 trillion package. Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, a prominent lawmaker in the group, told reporters Tuesday that money to bulk up the IRS’s ability to enforce tax laws would be included in the nascent framework.

The IRS officially estimates the “tax gap” coming in at $441 billion a year. But Charles Rettig, the agency’s commissioner, told Congress in April that the number could actually be over $1 trillion.

This gap between taxes owed and taxes paid could only grow if left without intervention, according to the Treasury Department, which estimates that President Joe Biden’s proposed $80 billion investment in the IRS could bring in an additional $700 billion over 10 years. That would still leave hundreds of billions in taxes going uncollected each year, Insider’s Ayelet Sheffey reports.

The bipartisan approach to IRS enforcement might not go that high.

“We have a CBO estimate that, if you put about $40 billion into bringing back the IRS workforce … that could result in $110 billion – which nets out to $63 billion,” Portman said on Tuesday. “It’s a relatively modest increase in IRS spending compared to what the Democrats proposed under Biden’s plan.”

The number of agents devoted to working on sophisticated tax evasion enforcement has fallen by 35% over the last decade, according to Treasury and the IRS budget has fallen by 20%, while audits fell by 42% from 2010 to 2017. According to a White House fact sheet, the audit rate for those making over $1 million a year declined by 80% from 2011 to 2018.

Biden wants to ramp up enforcement on the wealthiest Americans. A recent study from IRS researchers and academics found the top 1% of Americans fail to report about a quarter of their income. Income underreporting is nearly twice as high for the top 0.1%, which could account for billions unreported.

The role of IRS enforcement is coming into greater relief following a bombshell ProPublica report, which revealed just how little in proportional taxes some American billionaires pay. The tax mechanisms that those billionaires utilize are actually completely legal, but they’ve kickstarted talks of tax reform among Democrats.

Following the ProPublica report, five former treasury secretaries published an op-ed in The New York Times saying that, “in the ways outlined by President Biden’s recent proposal,” more enforcement could be pursued.

The five former treasury secretaries – who served under both Democratic and Republican presidents – write: “But on this issue, all should agree, including members of Congress of both parties: Giving the I.R.S. the tools it needs to improve compliance will raise significant revenue and create a fairer, more efficient system of tax administration.”

Read the original article on Business Insider

The wealthy were fleeing for low-tax states long before the pandemic slammed on the gas

miami beach
Florida is seeing its wealth increase at the expense of other states.

  • High-tax state residents were migrating to low-tax states pre-pandemic, per IRS data.
  • Low-tax states, especially Florida, are getting wealthier as a result.
  • BofA says ‘tax migration’ is far from a settled area but evidence of it is adding up.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Tax-induced migration was a key part of the narrative of 2020, but the story actually began long before that.

Lower-tax states are continuing to get richer thanks to a steady influx of new residents from higher-tax states, per a recent Bank of America Research note, which looked at recently released IRS data for tax returns from 2019, reflecting 2018 earnings.

The data showed that net gains in adjusted gross income (AGI) for lower-tax states were higher than those in higher-tax states: the latter saw $111 billion in AGI in 2018, while the former saw nearly $145 billion. The net AGI gain of lower-tax states also increased from 2017 to 2018 by $2 billion, to $34 billion, the team led by Ian Rogow wrote.

The rise of remote work prompted an outpouring of Americans, especially the wealthy, from big cities to more affordable areas in pursuit of sunnier locales and lower taxes. Tech elites from Silicon Valley have flocked to Texas, mirroring Big Apple financiers on the East Coast fleeing to Florida. But the IRS data makes it clear that the pandemic accelerated a pre-existing migration pattern.

It also confirms the anecdotal evidence that Florida in particular is attracting many wealthier residents compared to pre-pandemic times, and is seeing its wealth increase at the expense of other states. The average AGI per return of people migrating from Florida to New York in 2018 was $72,492. For those migrating from New York to Florida, it was $135,813. Florida gained a total of $7.3 billion of AGI from the top ten highest-taxed states.

People have “discounted” tax burdens as a move-inciting factor for some time, the BofA note reads, and while tax migration “remains an unsettled area,” leaders from high-tax states are becoming increasingly concerned that remote work and the SALT cap the federal cap on the state and local tax, which was slashed to $10,000 during Trump’s 2017 tax cut – are making residents question living there.

But not all is lost for big cities, which make up a good chunk of revenue for high-tax states. Consider New York City: Those who left during the pandemic are already returning in droves. USPS data released last month showed that nearly half of the Manhattanites who moved to Florida plan to move back. The city also still remains home to the highest number of ultra-net-worth individuals in the world.

A separate BofA Research report from May argued that reopening will spark a return to both NYC and San Francisco. “Both have the potential for some recovery in the near term,” the note reads. “NYC and SF remain premier cities for young renters given their status as economic, financial, and cultural centers, and the pullback in rents over the past year helps affordability.”

It seems that, for some Americans, big cities will always have an allure. But, as evidenced by the pre-pandemic migration trend, others are increasingly ditching them for a more affordable way of life and better savings.

Only time will tell whether high-tax states become truly overrated.

Read the original article on Business Insider

ProPublica’s bombshell tax investigation reportedly has lawmakers eyeing policy changes. One senator who designed a key corporation tax cut says it wasn’t supposed to let ‘multibillionaires’ avoid tax.

EW   Photo by Tom Williams Pool:Getty Images
Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren has proposed introducing a wealth tax.

A ProPublica investigation into the tax records of the richest people in the US, which showed that some avoided paying federal income tax even as their wealth grew, has renewed debate in Congress about tax reform, The New York Times reports.

The nonprofit news site ProPublica published a report on Tuesday showing how much the 25 richest Americans – including Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg – paid in tax. The report highlighted how two key tax loopholes benefit billionaires.

Some billionaires had slashed their tax bill via deductions made possible by tax cuts passed during the Trump administration, the ProPublica report said.

Republican Sen. Patrick J. Toomey, of Pennsylvania, told The New York Times that a 2017 corporation tax cut that he helped author was not intended to let the super-rich avoid paying taxes.

“My intention as the author of the 2017 tax reform was not that multibillionaires ought to pay no taxes,” Toomey told the NYT. “I believe dividends and capital gains should be taxed at a lower rate, but certainly not zero.”

Read more: ProPublica’s billionaire tax data shows the importance of closing 2 key tax loopholes. Here’s how.

ProPublica reported that Musk’s wealth grew by $14 billion from 2014 to 2018, but that he only paid $455 million in taxes. Bezos did not pay any income taxes for at least two years between 2006 and 2018, the report said.

Buffett paid minimal tax by holding Berkshire Hathaway stock and not paying a dividend, according to ProPublica’s report. The investor defended himself in a statement to the news outlet, saying his shareholders didn’t want a dividend and that he gave nearly all of his money to good causes.

A Republican-led Congress cut the corporation tax rate from 35% to 21% in 2017 under former President Donald Trump, benefiting company shareholders. The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act also reduced the tax rate for the top income bracket from 39.6% to 37%.

Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden, chairman of the Senate finance committee, said he was considering new reforms following the report, but did not share details.

Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren has pushed for a wealth tax – a 2% tax on a person’s net worth between $50 million and $1 billion. In March, Warren introduced an Ultra-Millionaire Tax Act with Rep. Pramila Jayapal of Washington and Rep. Brendan Boyle of Pennsylvania.

“Raising multibillionaires’ income taxes isn’t enough when these guys don’t grow their fortunes from income,” Warren tweeted Wednesday. “We need a Wealth Tax in American to help fix a tax system that’s rigged for the rich and powerful.”

Read the original article on Business Insider

Trump appointees have been left furious after being asked to ‘immediately’ pay thousands of dollars in deferred payroll taxes, which they thought would be forgiven

donald trump melania trump
Former President Donald Trump and former first lady Melania Trump.

  • Members of Trump’s admin were asked to pay the payroll tax Trump deferred, Politico reported.
  • Trump deferred some payroll tax in August 2020, sidestepping Congress in an emergency declaration.
  • “I just wish I had the option to opt-out,” a former administration staffer told Politico.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Some staffers from President Donald Trump’s administration have reportedly seen their tax bills spike as they’re being asked to pay payroll taxes deferred by the president.

Politico reported that members of Trump’s administration have reportedly been receiving letters asking them to pay Social Security taxes that were deferred, with at least one bill reaching $1,500.

“If the indebtedness is not paid in full within 30 calendar days, we intend to forward this debt to the Department of Treasury, Treasury Offset Program, for further collection,” said a copy of a letter sent May 18, 2021, by an accounting officer from the Office of Administration.

Trump set the policy on August 8, 2020, in a memo to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, directing Mnuchin to defer some payroll taxes to “put money directly in the pockets of American workers” who needed it most.

Trump sidestepped Congress to make the change because the pandemic was “of sufficient severity and magnitude to warrant an emergency declaration.”

As many as 1.3 million federal workers may have had some of their payroll taxes deferred under the measure, as Insider reported in September. Under the plan, earners paid less than $4,000 every two weeks wouldn’t have to pay the 6.2% tax out of their paychecks from September through the end of the year.

Now, the government’s looking for those deferred taxes, according to Politico. The report quoted several former administration staffers who called the bills “unacceptable.” One said: “It’s just a very unfortunate situation.”

The letter published by Politico included a “Voluntary Repayment Agreement” as an attachment, with an option to pay via credit or debit card.

One anonymous Trump appointee told the publication that the former president had a “good plan,” but, “I just wish I had the option to opt-out.”

Read the original article on Business Insider