(Unsplash)But what does the case really mean?
There is a story circulating about an Oregon man who beat the IRS in court over his refusal to pay income taxes until the federal government stops funding abortions. As you might imagine, as a taxpayers’-rights advocate, I’ve been asked what the case really means.
Court documents indicate that the headlines are misleading. This story warrants full and proper analysis, so here we go.
Michael Bowman is adamantly anti-abortion. On the premise that the federal government is funding the abortion industry — either directly or indirectly — he has refused to file tax returns or pay income taxes since 1997. He is not motivated by an anti-tax or anti-IRS ideology per se; nor is he necessarily anti-government. Indeed, he loves America. He is simply a Christian taking a stand against funding abortion.
Due to Mike’s impressive string of non-filing, the IRS prepared substitutes for returns (SFRs) for the years 1999–2001, 2008, and 2009. The agency then pursued civil collection of the resulting assessments. On two occasions in November 2013, Mike phoned the IRS’s revenue officer assigned to his case and left phone messages stating that he would not pay