IRS to Revoke 362,000 US Passports, Citing ‘Serious Tax Delinquency’

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has notified the State Department to revoke the passports of 362,000 American citizens for what they call “serious tax delinquency”, defined as $50,000 or more in tax debt owed to the US government.

The IRS was given the ability to revoke or deny individual’s passports in a little talked about piece of legislation signed into law by Barack Obama near the end of his administration, called the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act or FAST Act.

Essentially, the bill was a $300 billion infrastructure spending plan but it also included a controversial section concerning tax debts, giving the IRS the ability to deem individuals tax delinquent and therefore, require that the State Department retract their passport privileges.

As for the first 362,000 names sent to the State Department, they are only the beginning, with more coming throughout the year as the IRS tries to get all people with over $50,000 in tax debt listed as unworthy of a passport.

According to Zero Hedge, this newly granted power to the IRS, which disregards due process, has serious implications for what it means to be a US citizen:

“Think about it– a passport is the most common document to evidence an individual’s citizenship. And… poof… they can take it away from you with the click of a button. Likewise, the enforcement of the FAST Act shows that you’re not even really a citizen. You’re just renting your citizenship from the government.”

Also, it’s possible–maybe even likely–that individuals will have their passports revoked or denied due to human error or bureaucratic mistakes in the listing process. Then, they would have to fight both the IRS and the State Department to get unlisted.

Read the full story here.

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