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The IRS Is Soon to Be Leaderless at the Worst Possible Time

In case you haven’t heard, IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig will be leaving the agency in three weeks and his replacement has not yet been found, leaving a leadership void. The Wall Street Journal wrote about it yesterday:

With less than three weeks left in Charles Rettig’s term as Internal Revenue Service commissioner, President Biden hasn’t picked anyone to replace him, leaving the tax agency without a leader to spearhead the $80 billion agency expansion that Democrats just pushed through Congress.

The delay in choosing and confirming Mr. Rettig’s replacement nearly certainly means an interim IRS commissioner after Nov. 12. That acting commissioner might be reluctant to make binding decisions that affect the agency’s long-term future.

Any vacancy lasting until January would let Republicans influence or reject a Biden nominee should they win a Senate majority in November’s election.

The Biden administration didn’t place enough priority on finding an IRS commissioner over the past two years, and the decision is now likely to fall to the next Congress, said Ben Koltun, director of research at Beacon Policy Advisors LLC in Washington.

A person familiar with the matter told WSJ officials have been talking to potential candidates. Sure hope so.

Given that the IRS is buried under a huge backlog and suffering with critical hiring needs, dragging the process of finding a new commish out any longer than it has to be could worsen both of these issues significantly.

The IRS is will hopefully have better luck finding a commissioner than they will trying to fill 87,000 new positions over the next ten years. In the last decade, the IRS has lost 17,000 enforcement workers and nearly 9,000 customer service representatives so what’s one commissioner really in the grand scheme of things.

IRS Leader’s Looming Exit Leaves Hole at Tax Agency as Expansion Begins [Wall Street Journal]