“The American people might be surprised to know that we don’t already ask those running for office and Congress members whether they’re hiding money offshore,” Durbin said. “Without this bill the American people won’t know if a candidate is avoiding paying their fair share … which costs American taxpayers $100 billion a year.”
“There are only two reasons why a person has Swiss bank account,” Durbin said. “Number one: to hide their level of wealth … and two, if they think the Swiss franc is stronger than American dollar.”
“This is not a new issue,” said Levin, who has fought it for more than a decade. “When a crooked business or a shameless individual does not pay its fair share, the burden gets shifted to others, usually to ordinary taxpayers and working Americans. … Tax dodgers and tax avoiders have continued to exploit every offshore loophole and tax haven that they can find.”
Durbin and Levin said efforts to crack down on offshore tax havens once had bipartisan support, positing that the only plausible reason an American would have a Swiss bank account is to hide or conceal their wealth. Durbin said he intends to propose the legislation as an amendment to an unrelated bill, arguing that bringing it up separately would eat up a week’s worth of Senate time. He admitted has hasn’t spoken to Republicans about it yet.