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WaPo ‘Fact Checker’ Is Fact Checked After Using Biden Talking Points to Defend Increase in IRS Agents

WaPo ‘Fact Checker’ Is Fact Checked After Using Biden Talking Points to Defend Increase in IRS Agents

“The GOP is preying on people’s fears of an audit — which is practically nil (and 80 percent of which are just an exchange of letters). The stated goal is crack down on well-heeled tax cheats, not ordinary Americans, to close a tax gap estimated at $381 billion a year.” – Glenn Kessler

Joe Biden and his fellow Democrats are understandably taking a lot of heat from Republicans for the provision in their bogusly named “Inflation Reduction Act” that calls for over $80 billion in funding for the IRS, which includes adding 87,000 more IRS agents.

As we’ve noted before, whenever Democrats are on the ropes or otherwise have their backs against the wall after being called out for lying and contradicting themselves, so-called “fact checkers” invariably will rush to their rescue in an effort to bail them out.

Such was the case on Thursday when the Washington Post’s resident fact checker Glenn Kessler and his WaPo colleague Marianna Sotomayor teamed up to try and shoot down Republican claims about the number of agents that will be added and who they would be targeting:

What was especially illuminating about their bogus “fact checks” is that in the third and final tweet in his thread, Kessler actually used Biden administration talking points to defend the provision from Republican attacks (something Reuters and also did):

“The stated goal is” – yeah, sure, because the government has never, ever lied or exceeded their “stated goals” in any proposed legislation that involves expanding federal departments, have they, Glenn?

The problem with Kessler’s and Sotomayor’s supposed “debunking” of Republican talking points on the IRS agents is that the CBO has confirmed that at least $20 billion from future audits from the beefed up IRS will come from those making less than $400,000 a year.

Further, as Phil Kerpen noted, Kessler’s claim about the “net increase” in IRS staff being 25% was not true based on an actual reading of the bill and related government documents:

In May 2021, the Treasury Dept. compiled a report noting what the IRS could do with $80 billion more in funding. Among the suggestions? Adding nearly 87,000 new agents.

Is it a coincidence that $80 billion is what the IRS got out of the Inflation Reduction Act? Nope. Is it true that fact-checking as an institution has become absolutely worthless? Yep.

— Stacey Matthews has also written under the pseudonym “Sister Toldjah” and can be reached via Twitter. —


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False facts are still facts and must be vehemently defended by propaganda in political grift land.

    oldcheffy in reply to healthguyfsu. | August 21, 2022 at 2:29 pm

    It’s actually incredible that the Democrats have a single supporter I can’t wrap my head around how intellectually helpless you have to be to vote Democrat

Fact checking hasn’t become completely worthless. It was always completely worthless.

    It is not completely worthless. It accomplishes exactly what it is designed to do. It allows people to ignore things that they don’t want to know by saying to you that it has been debunked and that you are spreading misinformation.

This isn’t about raising tax money. This is about the end game of fascism.

GOP Rep Sounds The Alarm On Viral IRS Training Video:

I love reading Kessler’s stuff.
It’s all invariably so hempworthy.

Glenn Kessler: Cell-block b*tch to the Democrat stars.

Does any rational person believe the “tax gap” is more than a tiny fraction of the claimed amount?

nordic prince | August 21, 2022 at 8:17 am

Who actually believes a word “fact checkers” say?

    Antifundamentalist in reply to nordic prince. | August 21, 2022 at 9:16 am

    Only those that want to believe.

    CommoChief in reply to nordic prince. | August 21, 2022 at 9:56 am

    The folks having a moment of doubt in their political philosophy. They can then use the ‘fact’ check to resolve their crisis of faith. In that sense these BS fact checks serve a useful purpose for the establishment in keeping their adherents from beginning a journey towards truth.

    Dimsdale in reply to nordic prince. | August 21, 2022 at 10:47 am

    Kessler is a hack checker. No facts necessary, except for what his WH handlers let him use.

    The Compleat Useful Idiot, by Glenn Kessler.

There is one error in the “87,000 armed agents” claim: There’s no indication that they’ll be armed. The recruitment ad for the enforcement division was completely unrelated to this proposal, and most of the 87,000 new agents will not be in that division. And there’s nothing new about that division being armed — it has been for over a century.

BierceAmbrose | August 21, 2022 at 8:50 pm

Motte-and-Bailey much?`

“completely unrelated to this proposal,”

Same agency. Same time frame. Same topic: hiring of agents. Same activity: enforcement. Seems at least kinda-sorta related, to me.

“…most of the 87,000 new agents will not be in that division”
Divisions, tasking, areas of responsibility and headcount are all somewhat fungible. *Unleash*, perhaps they meant *unleash* 87,000 more enforcement agents on taxpayers, by freeing them up through hires elsewhere. The very bill n administration analysis, n PR talk about “enforcement”, so what are we to believe?

“And there’s nothing new about that division being armed…”
I do wonder if there’s something new about recruiting for IRS agents to be “on call” and “ready to use deadly force.”

The only way they could have made this look worse was looking like they were trying to hide it, or misrepresent what it would do. Oh, wait…

    BierceAmbrose in reply to BierceAmbrose. | August 21, 2022 at 8:52 pm

    Related, while I’m generally for people trying to better themselves, it’s really unseemly for the Screaming-D’s to try to be as messaging incompetent as the Feckless-R’s.

    Leave them a little something: come on, man.

    Milhouse in reply to BierceAmbrose. | August 22, 2022 at 12:06 pm

    Um, no. The proposal to fund the hiring of 87,000 new agents is not an agency action, it’s a proposal in the legislature. Biden is asking Congress to give the IRS this money, so that it can hire new agents. The IRS doesn’t get involved until and unless it gets the money. The recruitment ad was placed by the agency, for currently existing vacancies in a division that has always been armed. So no, there’s nothing new about specifying the requirements for that division. And the ad is no justification for those who have conflated the two things and jumped to the conclusion that the proposed new agents will also be armed. Presumably some of them will be, but only some, just as only some existing agents are armed.

BierceAmbrose | August 22, 2022 at 2:36 pm

More misdirection. When did you start believing any agency isn’t involved in influencing legislation that authorizes or funds it?

I, myself, am not interested in swamp land in Arizona. I do have some for sale, if you’re buying.

As for the rest, saying it again doesn’t make it true. Neither does it address the argument made, so I will thank you for graciously conceding the point.