Press Releases

WASHINGTON–U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) has joined Senator Mike Braun (R-IN) and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to introduce a bill to prevent the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) from being used as a political weapon against American citizens.

“Our First Amendment freedoms are fundamental, yet during the Obama administration the IRS targeted and punished Americans engaged in protected speech. That was inexcusable and condemnable,” Boozman said. “The Trump administration installed necessary safeguards to prohibit such conduct, but Democrats’ latest elections overhaul bill seeks to undermine these needed prohibitions. Our bill protects every American’s personal information from being used for the purposes of political harassment and retribution.”

“The American people remember all too well what can happen when the IRS is allowed to subject individuals to unequal scrutiny, depending on their political beliefs. The prior administration was right to intervene and put hard limits on the sort of personal information unelected bureaucrats could demand from nonprofit organizations and their donors. In the face of left-wing plans to tear down these commonsense protections, our bill would codify them permanently. I’m proud to stand with Senator Braun, the overwhelming majority of our Republican colleagues, and with citizens across America in defense of the First Amendment,” McConnell said

“We saw during the Obama years that the IRS was used as a political weapon to target conservative nonprofits, and under H.R.1 the Biden IRS would be empowered to block tax-exempt status and publicly expose a group’s donors to harassment from liberal groups and the media if their beliefs are deemed to be politically unfavorable. This bill will prevent the IRS from being weaponized against conservatives like it was under President Obama,” Braun said.

Other cosponsors of the legislation include Senators Mike Crapo (R-ID), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Mike Lee (R-UT), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Ron Johnson (R-WI), Rand Paul (R-KY), Mike Rounds (R-SD), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Richard Shelby (R-AL), John Cornyn (R-TX), Roger Marshall (R-KS), Tommy Tuberville (R-AL), John Barrasso (R-WY), Josh Hawley (R-MO), Steve Daines (R-SD), Richard Burr (R-NC), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Ted Cruz (R-TX), Rick Scott (R-FL), Jim Risch (R-ID), Pat Toomey (R-PA), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Joni Ernst (R-IA), James Lankford (R-OK), Jerry Moran (R-KS), James Inhofe (R-OK), Roger Wicker (R-MS), John Thune (R-SD), Todd Young (R-IN), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Roy Blunt (R-MS), Ben Sasse (R-NE), Bill Hagerty (R-TN), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Tom Cotton (R-AR), John Hoeven (R-ND) and John Kennedy (R-LA).

The bill is endorsed by American Commitment, Americans for Prosperity, Americans for Tax Reform, Association of Mature American Citizens, Council for Citizens Against Government Waste, Club for Growth, Freedom Works, Heritage Action for America, Institute for Free Speech, National Taxpayers Union and People United for Privacy. 


As was reported between 2010 and 2012, the Obama IRS systematically targeted conservative tax-exempt groups. The Trump administration released a final rule in May 2020 preventing the IRS from targeting certain tax-exempt groups based on their political beliefs. 

House Democrats’ H.R. 1 – the “For the People Act” – and Senate companion legislation S. 1 seek to repeal and undermine the Trump rule to weaponize the IRS to target nonprofit organizations based on the applicants’ political and policy positions. 

The Don’t Weaponize the IRS Act codifies the Trump rule that protects groups regardless of their political ideology or beliefs, and prevents the IRS from doxing donors to these groups. 

Removing the requirement to report the names and addresses of donors – information which is not needed for tax administration purposes – helps protect taxpayers’ First Amendment rights.

The text of the Don’t Weaponize the IRS Act can be accessed here.