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Facts First™: CNN's John Harwood promotes 'blatantly dishonest' WaPo fact check painting GOP as liars about Biden's big plans for the IRS

Another day, another top-notch analysis from the Washington Post Fact Checker:

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Seriously, it’s so good, CNN’s John Harwood just had to share it:

WaPo’s Salvador Rizzo gave the claim three Pinocchios. Three!

But don’t just take his word for it:

Samantha Jacoby, senior tax legal analyst at the left-leaning Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, called these GOP claims “complete fabrications.”

“The IRS would have no way to monitor individuals’ transactions,” she said in an email. “Moreover, the modified proposal from Senate Democrats would exempt W-2 wages and federal benefits from the $10,000 threshold. (So for example, an account holder with $50,000 in wages but less than $10,000 in other types of deposits would not be covered.)”

See? A left-wing tax legal analyst says that Republicans are totally lying!

And a policy analyst on the Right totally agrees that Republicans’ claims have no merit whatsoever:

Garrett Watson, senior policy analyst at the right-leaning Tax Foundation, said the new reporting requirements could lead to audits but declined to endorse the senators’ statements.

“The IRS reporting proposal would share aggregate inflow and outflow information on a subset of bank accounts based on the $10,000 threshold (potentially excluding certain income sources, such as wage income through direct deposit),” Watson said in an email. “It’s worth noting, however, that this information may trigger audits in certain situations, which would then potentially include a more detailed examination of bank account activity that otherwise would not happen. The Treasury Department has noted that the audit focus would be on those earning over $400,000, but it’s not clear how this would be measured as a counterfactual or how this would play into IRS auditing decisions.”
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Oh. Actually, it sounds like Garrett Watson is saying that Democrats’ proposal could open the door to some pretty shady, snoopy stuff by the IRS. Which would kind of undermine Rizzo’s claim that Republicans are full of it.

Which would mean that CNN’s John Harwood is promoting a pretty lousy excuse for a “fact check.” But he’d never do such a thing, would he?

Good luck, John. We’re all counting on you.

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It’s so … up John Harwood’s alley.

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