Blog

Taxpayers Protection Alliance
Facebook     Twitter     Youtube

Blog

Category: Congress



  • Member Spotlight: Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.)

    Michi Iljazi on June 28, 2016

    pg

    Today, the Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) introduced a new feature to the regular podcast called “Member Spotlight.” This Member Spotlight is the first in a series of podcasts that will showcase a member of Congress who has done extraordinary work for taxpayers.  Our first Member Spotlight features Rep. Paul Gosar who represents Arizona’s 4th District in the United States House of Representatives (click here to listen).  First elected in 2010, Rep. Gosar is a true hero for taxpayers with his tireless work to rein in spending and excessive regulation.  Rep. Gosar is a model of what a fiscally responsible member of Congress should be. Rep. Gosar has worked on a number of issues that have been beneficial to taxpayers. One of the first issues addressed was about the national debt, which has now surpassed $19 trillion. Rep. Gosar pointed out that on its current trajectory, the value of the national debt is likely to bypass the entire United States economy in just a few years.  He also noted that three entitlement programs account for almost half of all government spending. The discussion then focused on issues that matter to taxpayers in Arizona and all across the United States. Rep. Gosar also highlighted legislation he was working on that dealt with new regulations and the appropriations process.

    » Read More
  • Return to Sender: House Postal Reform Bill Gives Handouts to the USPS on the Backs of Consumers

    David Williams on June 27, 2016

    usps

    Washington, D.C. –
    House Government Oversight Committee Chairman, Jason Chaffetz and the committee’s Ranking Member, Elijah Cummings, introduced a congressional discussion draft for postal reform legislation last Wednesday. Following $56.8 billion in financial losses since 2007 and $125 billion in unfunded liabilities, the proposed legislation is intended to provide financial relief for the financially troubled agency. TPA released a statement last week reacting to the the proposed legislation.

    Click 'read more' below to see the full statement.

    » Read More
  • Blueprint from Chairman Brady Gives Needed Momentum on Tax Reform

    Michi Iljazi on June 24, 2016

    brady
    House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas)

    Comprehensive tax reform is long overdue.  In fact, the last time there was comprehensive tax reform (1986) Ferris Bueller's Day Off was the number one movie in the United States.  Tax reform is not only long overdue, but it is also an important component to jump starting the economy. A terrible jobs report, rising costs, stagnant wages for working families, and a Congress that seems to be paralyzed with inaction much of the year give credence to the message that elected officials need to come together and fix the broken tax code. There is a plan to fix to tax code.  House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) and House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) unveiled a tax reform blueprint (click here) that will serve as the platform for a meaningful conversation on tax reform. The goal is to get the ideas for how tax reform can be done in Congress on the table, and keep the discussions going this year.  And then, in 2017, lawmakers can put a real, bipartisan plan together that the House and Senate can send to the White House. Some of the important components of the tax reform blueprint include: a fairer and simpler code for individuals and small businesses, lowering the corporate tax rate, and repealing the Death Tax.

    » Read More
  • Let Taxpayers Off the Hook: End the USDA Catfish Inspection Program

    David Williams on June 20, 2016

    cf

    This article originally appeared on Real Clear Policy on June 12, 2016

    With the continued bloat of the federal government, it’s not hard to find examples of redundancy. When the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing, mistakes are made, efforts are duplicated, and taxpayers wind up paying the price. There is, perhaps, no better example of this phenomenon than a newly minted United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) catfish regulation program. The program tasks USDA with regulating and inspecting domestic and imported Siluriformes fish, including catfish, before these products end up on retail shelves and restaurant menus — a reasonable and necessary aspiration for food safety. The problem? The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) already inspects imported seafood. The best way to strengthen food safety is to streamline seafood inspection in one agency — the FDA — that already has the know-how to do the job, not by fracturing the process into two separate agency programs.

    » Read More
  • TPA Reminds House of $11 Billion in Earmarks in Defense Spending Bill

    Michi Iljazi on June 15, 2016

    cap

    WASHINGTON, D.C. –
    As the House moves closer a final vote on more than $500 billion fiscal year 2017 Defense Appropriations Act, it is important to remind lawmakers of the waste that is in the bill. TPA combed through the legislation and found 235 earmarks totaling $11.1 billion (click here to see the full list) that were not requested by the Pentagon and inserted by members of Congress. These earmarks show that Congress’ self-imposed earmark ban is nothing more than a lie to taxpayers.  There were many familiar wasteful projects on the list, including the F-35, the Littoral Combat Ship, and the Abrams Tank. All of these programs have been notorious for their waste and abuse of taxpayer dollars and have not been requested by the Pentagon.

    » Read More
  • Coalition of Nearly 100 Groups to Congress: Support H.R. 5053

    Michi Iljazi on June 14, 2016

    irs

    The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has been criticized (rightfully so) when it comes to how the agency has been treating taxpayers and taxpayer information.  The Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) strongly believes that the agency that enforces tax law should be working for the taxpayer, not instilling fear in them. Keeping that in mind, combined with recent revelations of just how widespread the IRS targeting scandal was, TPA sent this letter, signed by over 90 organizations, to the House yesterday calling on Congress to support H.R. 5053, the “Preventing IRS Abuse and Protecting Free Speech Act,” sponsored by Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.). The legislation would eliminate the Schedule B form for 501(c) organizations, which includes identifiable information of contributors to 501(c) organizations. This information is irrelevant to the routine handling of 501(c) organization tax filings and will help make tax compliance easier. The IRS doesn’t need the form, and eliminating it will help to curb possible targeting in the future.

    Click 'read more' below to see the full letter

    » Read More
  • New Legislation Will Harm Consumer Choice for Contact Lenses

    Michi Iljazi on June 6, 2016

    lens

    This article originally appeared in Inside Sources on May 17, 2016

    One thing the government does better than any other institution is create problems where none exist.  But, another thing the government also really excels at is making things worse for consumers.  This is evident with new legislation that could harm consumers who want to buy contact lenses.  The issue of contact lenses may not seem pressing, but with more than 40 million people in the United States who wear contact lenses, the implications could be massive.

    » Read More
  • Tax Reform, Not Overreaching Treasury Rules, the Answer to Restoring Competitiveness

    David Williams on June 3, 2016

    cap

    This article appeared in Morning Consult on May 17, 2016

    Next month, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) is expected to unveil what was referred to in Politico in as a “comprehensive blueprint on where we want the tax code to go.”  The goal is to prepare Congress to move on tax reform when a new President takes office next year. This news is encouraging for 2017, although the hope is that Congress takes some legislative action this year on overhauling our tax code, namely to put a stop to the U.S. Treasury Department’s foolish decision to punish American business with piecemeal regulations.

    » Read More
  • Taxes, Regulations, and the Emergence of the Sharing Economy

    Morgan Reed on June 1, 2016

    Morgan Reed is the executive director for ACT | The App Association

    Last week, I testified before the House Small Business Committee at its hearing, “The Sharing Economy: A Taxing Experience for New Entrepreneurs.” The discussion focused on how labor laws and tax policy should evolve to better reflect the American workforce of today. As executive director of ACT | The App Association, I represent the interests of more than 5,000 app makers and connected device companies across the country. Our members leverage the connectivity of smart devices to create innovative solutions that make people’s lives better. Some of our members are part of the growing sharing economy, which is characterized by peer-to-peer exchanges of goods both digital and physical.

    » Read More
  • Veterans Affairs Department Still Not Living Up to Promises of Reform

    Michi Iljazi on May 28, 2016

    rb
    VA Secretary Robert McDonald, with President Obama 

    This weekend is Memorial Day, a day to remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation. The Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) is grateful to all of those in the United States Armed Forces who put their lives on the line so that America can be a safer and freer place.  Memorial Day is also a reminder of the shameful treatment U.S. veterans are receiving at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) clinics and hospitals.

    » Read More
  • Veterans Affairs Department Still Not Living Up to Promises of Reform

    Michi Iljazi on May 25, 2016

    rb
    VA Secretary Robert McDonald, with President Obama 

    This weekend is Memorial Day, a day to remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation. The Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) is grateful to all of those in the United States Armed Forces who put their lives on the line so that America can be a safer and freer place.  Memorial Day is also a reminder of the shameful treatment U.S. veterans are receiving at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) clinics and hospitals.

    » Read More
  • TPA Uncovers $11 Billion in Earmarks in Defense Appropriations Bill

    Michi Iljazi on May 19, 2016

    cap

    WASHINGTON, D.C. –
    Earlier this week, the House released their initial markup for the fiscal year 2017 Defense Appropriations Act that will spend more than $500 billion. TPA combed through the report and found 235 earmarks totaling $11.1 billion (click here to see the full list) that were not requested by the Pentagon and inserted by members of Congress. These earmarks show that Congress’ self-imposed earmark ban is nothing more than a lie to taxpayers. There were many familiar wasteful projects on the list, including the F-35, the Littoral Combat Ship, and the Abrams Tank. All of these programs have been notorious for their waste and abuse of taxpayer dollars and have not been requested by the Pentagon.

    » Read More
  • TPA Joins Coalition Supporting OCO Amendment to FY2017 NDAA

    Michi Iljazi on May 19, 2016

    logo

    Last night the House of Representatives passed H.R. 4909, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017, by a vote of 277-147. The issue of Pentagon spending is important to the Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) and making sure that elected officials are working with the Defense Department to put forward the best policies to provide for the national defense is critical. Unfortunately, wasting taxpayer money is not something that is in the best interests of national security. Time and again TPA has exposed billions of dollars in earmarks buried in defense spending, we continue to call for an end to wasteful programs like the F-35 and Abrams Tank, and there is also the issue of budget gimmicks like the Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) Account. Yesterday, TPA joined a broad coalition letter led by Taxpayers for Common Sense supporting an amendment to the FY 2017 NDAA that “codifies criteria developed by the Office of Management and Budget in 2010 to clarify when military spending should be designated as contingency operations and properly be part of the Overseas Contingency Operations budget.” The bipartisan amendment was sponsored by Reps. Mick Mulvaney (R-SC), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Barbara Lee (R-CA), and Mark Sanford (R-SC) and adopted in a voice vote with several other amendments. TPA will continue to keep an eye on defense spending related bills, including the coming Defense Appropriations bill, which is likely to include more earmarks, as it has in years past.

    Click 'read more' below to see the full letter

    » Read More
  • TPA Joins Broad Coalition Urging Congress to Reform EPA Ozone Standard

    Michi Iljazi on May 13, 2016

    epa

    As the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) continues their war on the private sector, it is becoming more clear everyday that the agency only cares about promulgating rules instead working with the good faith actors in the business community to put forth solutions that balance the needs of our environment, as well as the sustained growth of the economy. Taxpayers Protection Alliance has been a vocal critic of the policies that EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy has enacted, noting that many of these policies will bring the same result: hindering growth in the energy sector. It is with that in mind that TPA joined Americans for Prosperity in a coalition of 60 organizations to send this letter House and Senate leaders urging them to take action to reform the EPA’s Ozone Standard, known as National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS).

    Click 'read more' below to see the full letter

    » Read More
  • TPA Releases Statement on USPS Second Quarter Report Showing $2 Billion Loss

    David Williams on May 10, 2016

    usps

    WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) expressed concern about the continuing financial death spiral of the United States Postal Service (USPS).   Today’s reported second quarter loss of $2 billion indicates that it’s business as usual when it comes to USPS’s fiscal predicaments. The $2 billion loss for this period adds to the mountain of debt that the Postal Service has amassed.  USPS has lost $36.6 billion in the last five years and has $116 billion more in unfunded liabilities on its books when also taking into account a $15 billion liability with the U.S. Treasury.  As a part of this, USPS is neglecting to pay its $1.4 billion retiree benefits payment for the quarter despite the agency's legal obligation to do so. TPA is also concerned that taxpayers will be asked to bail out the agency should their financial situation worsen, which becomes an even greater possibility with each multi-billion dollar quarterly loss.

    » Read More
  • TPA Joins Coalition Urging Congress to Make Free File Program Permanent

    Michi Iljazi on May 6, 2016

    tax

    Now that Tax Day 2016 is over, taxpayers can relax for at list a little while. However, before you know it, tax season will creep up once again and everyone will be looking to make sure they are checking all the right boxes when they file their tax returns. Tax complexity has been a major issue and it has cost taxpayers time and a great deal of money, as evidenced by a recent study from the National Taxpayers Union. One current program, the Free File program, has been able to save taxpayers time and money through a public-private partnership that makes filing taxes a great deal less stressful for tens of millions of Americans. As Senator Elizabeth Warren attempts to hand tax-filing services entirely to the Internal Revenue Service (what a great idea that would be), the Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) joined Americans for Tax Reform on a coalition letter urging Congress to make the Free File program permanent.

    Click 'read more' below to see the full letter

    » Read More
  • Tax Day Is Over, But the Public’s Desire for Tax Reform Remains

    David Williams on May 2, 2016

    taxes

    This article appeared in Inside Sources on April 20, 2016

    Whew! Another Tax Day has come and gone. Even though Americans had three extra days to finish their taxes, that added time didn’t do much to alleviate the stress of filling out taxes. Even when you are expected to get money back from the government, it seems like the entire process is a continuous series of hurdles that people are being forced to jump over in order to get their own money back. And, as this tax day gets further behind us, the need for tax reform continues to grow and people from all walks of life and political persuasions agree that tax reform is critical.

    » Read More
  • The Obamacare Bailout

    David Williams on April 25, 2016

    obamacare

    This article originally appeared in Townhall.com

    The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing on April 15th to address yet another failure of Obamacare: the bailing out of insurance companies through the reinsurance program. Created to financially protect insurers during the early years of the implementation of the legislation, the Transitional Reinsurance Program established by the Affordable Care Act requires the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to deposit a certain portion of fees, $5 billion to be exact. The fee was to be collected by the Treasury for deficit reduction, but for the past two years, much of that has been illegally paid out to health insurers instead. It’s no surprise that Obamacare has been riddled with setbacks and broken promises. When the law was enacted, the President assured Americans that patients would come first and health insurers would be held accountable for providing affordable coverage, but the reality is quite the opposite. Patients don’t come first when it comes to Obamacare, insurance companies do.

    » Read More
  • Coalition Outlines Billions in Specific Pentagon Spending Reforms for Congress

    Michi Iljazi on April 21, 2016

    dod

    The Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) continues to believe that spending reform is one of the most pressing issues for elected officials in Congress today. As budget deadlines pass and Congress gets further away from getting back to regular order, it is critical that Washington find a way to reduce spending, in all areas. The budget of the Pentagon is filled with wasteful spending that should be trimmed both immediately and responsibly. Recently, TPA joined a broad coalition effort sending a letter to Congress not only urging spending reform, but outlining specific cuts that could be realized if politicians had the will to act. The savings proposed totaled $38.6 billion in taxpayer dollars. Those savings come from just seven reforms; imagine how much money taxpayers could be saved if Washington looked at every agency.

    Click 'read more' below to see the letter

    » Read More
  • Happy Tax Day! Watch Your Assets!

    Michi Iljazi on April 15, 2016

    Tax Day 2016: Watch Your Assets

    Today is Tax Day 2016!  The Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) hit the streets and talked to folks from around the country about what they thought about taxes.  The last time there was comprehensive tax reform was 1986. A lot has changed since 1986, why hasn't the tax code? Many of the Presidential candidates have said that tax reform will be a priority if they are elected, but Congress has the ability to act now. This is a bipartisan issue, where both Republicans and Democrats agree that our outdated and cumbersome tax code needs to be reformed now. Taxpayers are sick of being in a time warp where yet another tax day comes and goes and nothing has changed. We need tax reform done in 2016.

    » Read More
<< 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 >>