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Tax Enforcement: A Public Choice Perspective

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  • Hunter, William J
  • Nelson, Michael A

Abstract

Federal income tax enforcement varies greatly across individual states. While it is not known if this interstate variation enhances efficiency, anecdotal evidence suggests it does not. In this paper, the authors apply the model of B. R. Weingast and M. Moran (1983) to the treasury and explore the relationship between the legislature and the IRS. Specifically, they model IRS audit rates by state as a function of both political and efficiency considerations. The authors find that the interstate difference in enforcement is influenced by efficiency considerations but also the IRS shifts enforcement away from states represented by legislators who sit on committees with oversight responsibility for the IRS. Copyright 1995 by Kluwer Academic Publishers

Suggested Citation

  • Hunter, William J & Nelson, Michael A, 1995. "Tax Enforcement: A Public Choice Perspective," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 82(1-2), pages 53-67, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:82:y:1995:i:1-2:p:53-67
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    Cited by:

    1. Hunter, William J. & Nelson, Michael A., 1996. "An IRS Production Function," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 49(1), pages 105-115, March.
    2. Stijn Goeminne & Benny Geys & Carine Smolders, 2008. "Political fragmentation and projected tax revenues: evidence from Flemish municipalities," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 15(3), pages 297-315, June.
    3. Carlos Esteban Posada, 1998. "Los mercados de instituciones y las instituciones endogenas," Lecturas de Economía, Universidad de Antioquia, Departamento de Economía, issue 48, pages 149-168, Enero Jun.
    4. Alberto Batinti, 2016. "NIH biomedical funding: evidence of executive dominance in swing-voter states during presidential elections," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 168(3), pages 239-263, September.
    5. Joshua Hall & Amanda Ross & Christopher Yencha, 2015. "The political economy of the Essential Air Service program," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 165(1), pages 147-164, October.
    6. Alejandro Esteller-Moré, 2005. "Is There a Connection Between the Tax Administration and the Political Power?," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 12(5), pages 639-663, September.
    7. Daniel Sutter & Lee Coppock, 2003. "The Tax Man Cometh: Constitutional Principles for Tax Enforcement," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 14(2), pages 107-118, June.
    8. Alejandro Esteller-More, 2003. "The Politics of Tax Administration: Evidence from Spain," Public Economics 0303004, EconWPA.
    9. Luca Barbone & Richard Bird & Jaime Vázquez Caro, 2012. "The Costs of VAT: A Review of the Literature," CASE Network Reports 0106, CASE-Center for Social and Economic Research.
    10. Correia, Maria M., 2014. "Political connections and SEC enforcement," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(2), pages 241-262.

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