Activists Call on Senators for Support
James George Jatras for RepealFATCA.com
June 6, 2013
Today 20 of America’s largest and most influential free-market, taxpayer protection and grassroots organizations, sent a letter to Senate members urging support for legislation introduced by Sen. Rand Paul to repeal major portion of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA). The bill, S. 887, would repeal FATCA’s most costly and privacy-violating provisions. As the letter explains:
“FATCA imposes on foreign financial institutions the obligation to provide financial information on the accounts of U.S. citizens without the need for evidence of tax evasion or other crimes. Institutions that fail to comply with costly reporting requirements are subject to a draconian 30% withholding of U.S.-derived income. In addition to the unjustified and unconstitutional invasion of the privacy of millions of Americans suspected of no wrongdoing, the practical consequences of the law include a growing refusal of many financial institutions to accept American clients or invest in the U.S. economy, the straining of relations between the U.S. and foreign nations whose fiscal sovereignty is being trampled, and an erosion of the separation of powers between the executive and legislative branches.”
The letter further states the following reasons why Senators should cosponsor S. 887 and repeal FATCA:
1. FATCA will not achieve its stated goal of significantly reducing tax evasion.
2. Unilateral and extralegal imposition of requirements on foreign institutions is straining relations with other nations.
3. Americans living and working overseas are being dropped by financial institutions seeking to avoid FATCA penalties, and face excessive penalties for minor mistakes.
4. The US economy will suffer a loss of foreign investment, resulting in fewer jobs and economic opportunities.
5. Promises by Treasury Department officials to provide reciprocal information sharing will add costly burdens on domestic institutions and their customers. Moreover, the intergovernmental agreement process they are using is not authorized by the law and represents a troubling end run around the Senate’s treaty review authority.
James George Jatras, Manager of RepealFATCA.com, noted, “FATCA’s already fatal flaws have only been compounded by the Treasury Department’s unconstitutional overreach in the form of statutorily unauthorized ‘intergovernmental agreements’ promising ‘reciprocal’ reporting of private financial data by US institutions. Both as a power grab and a huge and counterproductive economic burden, FATCA is unjustified and must be repealed before its full destructive impact is felt.”
CF&P President Andrew Quinlan commented, “Senator Paul’s leadership is greatly appreciated, but there’s no reason why he should stand alone. FATCA’s combination of high costs and no benefits mark it as low hanging fruit in the tax reform debate.” He added, “It’s time for other lawmakers to step up and support FATCA repeal.”
Brian Garst, CF&P Director of Government Affairs, added, “FATCA has started a chain reaction of bad tax policy throughout the world. With the world looking to the United States for leadership, lawmakers should seek to demonstrate that the American tradition of limited government and economic freedom are still the best way to achieve prosperity.” He concluded, “FATCA unfortunately puts political greed ahead of these time-honored principles.”
Representatives of the following 21 organization signed the Coalition letter:
Center for Freedom and Prosperity; American Commitment; Americans for Prosperity; Americans for Tax Reform; Center for Financial Privacy and Human Rights; Center for Individual Freedom; Competitive Enterprise Institute; Council for Citizens Against Government Waste; Family Business Coalition; FreedomWorks; Grassroot Voices; Independent Women’s Forum; Institute for Policy Innovation; Less Government; The National Tax Limitation Committee; National Taxpayers Union; R Street Institute; RepealFATCA.com; 60 Plus Association; Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council; and Taxpayers Protection Alliance
James George Jatras