DeSantis Stands Firm on Taxation, Welcomes Bill to Abolish the IRS

AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee

On Thursday, Florida Governor and Republican presidential candidate Ron DeSantis said he would welcome a bill to defund the IRS. DeSantis made the comments to Dana Loesch, a Second Amendment advocate and host of The Dana Show. 


During the interview, Loesch questioned DeSantis on his position regarding federal taxation, asking:

If Congress defunded the IRS and sent such a bill like that to your desk, number one: Would you sign it? And then what would you replace the system with? Are you for a fair tax? A flat tax? Where do you stand on that?

The Florida Governor responded by criticizing the IRS for corruption and being unfriendly to Americans, saying:

So, the answer’s yes. I think the IRS is a corrupt organization and I think that it’s not a friend to the average citizen or taxpayer. And so, we need something totally different.

Then DeSantis pointed to his record of supporting alternative flat rate systems, suggesting that the current system needs to be scrapped and re-imagined in a way that is more favorable to average taxpayers, telling Loesch:

I’ve supported all of the single rate proposals, I think they all would be a huge improvement over the current system and I would be welcoming to take this tax system, chuck it out the window and do something that’s more favorable to the average folks.


Last August, DeSantis sharply criticized President Biden’s plan of funding 87,000 new IRS agents, suggesting it was wholly disrespectful to the public, declaring:

Of all the things that have come out of Washington that have been outrageous, this has got to be pretty close to the top time. I think it was basically just the middle finger to the American public, that this is what they think of you.

At the time, DeSantis impressively noted the policy war on independent contractors and freelancers, which has gone from state-level economic doomsday laws like California’s AB5 to making its rounds through federal legislation and regulatory rulemaking. On targeting freelancers, DeSantis said:

They are going to go after independent contractors, they’re going to go after small business people, they’re going to go after someone that may be driving an Uber or a handyman or all these things. Why would they do that? Because you’re not going to be able to contend with the audit, so they’re going to crush a lot of people by doing that.

Ahead of his presidential announcement, DeSantis faced criticism from the largest super PAC supporting former President Donald Trump’s 2024 campaign, MAGA Inc., regarding his support for a national sales tax when he was a Congressman from 2013 to 2018. The super PAC claimed that DeSantis supported a 23 percent tax increase on purchases. However, this is a somewhat disingenuous claim because the sales tax would have eliminated all other federal taxes, including the income tax if enacted. DeSantis co-sponsored the Fair Tax Act (HR 25) in Congress multiple times, which aimed to reduce the overall tax burden and eliminate the IRS.


Last week, in a defense to the Trump-PAC criticisms, Bryan Griffin, Team DeSantis Press Secretary stated:

In Congress, the governor supported the concept of a Fair Tax, a plan to lower the overall tax burden on an individual by replacing all federal taxes — including income tax — with a lower tax. The plan also sought to end the IRS, which, at the time, was being weaponized by the Obama administration.”

Griffin also pointed to a 2019 tweet from Trump, explaining that taxpayer-friendly Florida would be his permanent residence, as New York’s heavy tax burdens and maltreatment of the then-President had driven him out of the state. 

Earlier this month, Never Back Down, a DeSantis PAC, pointed out that Trump supported the Fair Tax policy during his 2016 candidacy for President, publishing a video of his statements.


Governor DeSantis is on strong footing on the issue of taxation, based on his congressional record and previous support for abolishing and replacing the IRS with a flat rate system. 


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