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Natasha Sarin

Where Biden Can Find $1 Trillion

Make the rich actually pay what they owe.

Follow the money.

Follow the money.

Photographer: Frederic Lewis/Archive Photos/Getty Images

When President-elect Joe Biden takes office in January, he’ll face a quandary: how to reform the tax system to raise much-needed government revenue. One promising option: Give the Internal Revenue Service the resources needed to ensure the wealthiest are paying the taxes they already owe.

As it turns out, Donald Trump isn’t the only affluent American partial to aggressive tax maneuvers. Private equity executive Robert Smith, who made headlines in 2019 by pledging to pay off student loans for Morehouse College graduates, recently admitted to criminal tax evasion of hundreds of millions of dollars over a 15-year period (he will pay back taxes and penalties but avoid prison). The Justice Department has also indicted software executive Robert T. Brockman, claiming he concealed approximately $2 billion in income (with Smith’s help) in an offshoring scheme featuring a computer program aptly named “Evidence Eliminator.”