Charles Rettig Confirmed as New IRS Commissioner

Charles P. “Chuck” Rettig was confirmed as the new IRS Commissioner on September 12. Rettig will oversee the implementation of tax reform enacted last December under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) (P.L. 115-97).

New IRS Commissioner

The Senate confirmed Rettig’s nomination for IRS Commissioner by a 64-to-33 vote. Rettig received both Democratic and Republican support.

The Senate Finance Committee advanced Rettig’s nomination in July. President Donald Trump announced his nomination of Rettig last February.

Democratic Opposition

Although SFC ranking member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., previously said that Rettig is a “qualified nominee,” he took to the Senate floor on September 12 to urge his colleagues to oppose Rettig’s nomination.

Additionally, all SFC Democrats voted against advancing his nomination last July. SFC Democrats voted against his nomination in protest of IRS guidance, Rev. Proc. 2018-38, which limits Schedule B donor reporting for certain tax-exempt organizations.

Wyden’s opposition of Rettig’s nomination is based on criticisms of the Trump administration that are not directly related to Rettig’s capacity to serve as chief of the IRS. Wyden previously said he would only support Rettig’s nomination if he promised to reverse the IRS guidance.

“The Trump administration announced a new rule opening the floodgates to more dark money and foreign money in our politics,” Wyden said on the Senate floor before the vote. “Dark money groups used to be required to disclose their donors to the IRS. With this new rule, they won’t be required to disclose at all.”

Qualified and Ready

However, SFC Chairman Orrin G. Hatch, R-Utah praised Rettig on September 12, saying that he is both “qualified and ready” to lead the IRS. “With the biggest tax overhaul in a generation on the books, it’s about time that the agency charged with administering our nation’s tax laws has a confirmed commissioner,” SFC Chairman Orrin G. Hatch, R-Utah said in a statement released immediately after Rettig was confirmed. “The Democrats’ reasons for not supporting Rettig’s nomination were unreasonable. I am pleased that the Senate was able to act on Rettig’s nomination despite these baseless objections.”

John Koskinen’s term as IRS Commissioner ended last November. David Kautter has been serving as Acting IRS Commissioner in the interim. Rettig’s term as IRS Commissioner will expire on November 12, 2022.

By Jessica Jeane, Senior News Editor

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