Texas Ranchers Who Experienced Brutal IRS Audit Issue Dire Warning to Middle-Class Americans


CORRECTION, June 30, 2023: An earlier version of this article incorrectly referred to all 87,000 new IRS hires authorized by “The Inflation Reduction Act” as “agents.” Those new IRS employees would work in all levels of the organization, not just in audits/enforcement.

This article also has been updated to clarify that the Hajda family’s story addresses how the IRS treats Americans in its present, understaffed (according to Democrats) state.

What will the 87,000 new Internal Revenue Service employees that the Democrats’ new tax and spend bill aims to hire mean for you?

Fact-checkers say they won’t mean much for the average American because the same bill that authorizes those hires only creates tax changes for corporations and those earning $400,000 per year or more.

But David and Deborah Hajda still have a dire warning about the agency’s power, even before it makes 87,000 new hires.

The Hajdas own the Raising 5 Cattle Company in Thorndale, Texas. Thirteen years ago, the IRS audited them thanks to, they say, an engine rebuild on one of their tractors.

Appearing on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom” on Tuesday, they had a five-word message to anyone who doesn’t take the prospect of an IRS audit seriously: “They want to get you.”

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The couple appeared on the same day that President Joe Biden signed the cynically misnomered “Inflation Reduction Act” into law.

In addition to spending gobs on the Democrats’ climate agenda and attempting to lower health care costs the liberal way for the zillionth time, the bill seeks to raise revenue by increasing taxes on some — and presumably by squeezing more tax money out of those whose tax rates will remain the same since those 87,000 hires will work in every part of the IRS, not just the teams that audit the super-rich.

And what can the IRS do, even now in what Democrats say is an understaffed situation?

Well, the Hajdas family spoke out about that. The couple initially went viral after sharing their story on their company’s Facebook page.

Is the IRS too aggressive?

“Can you imagine a government coming into your home and you have to give them everything? It shouldn’t have happened to us,” the post read. “It’s about to happen to you too if you own a business.”

“We got audited over basically a $7,800 engine rebuild on a very old tractor,” Deborah Hajda said during her appearance on Fox’s “America’s Newsroom.”

“They just said this was a red flag, and we’re going to audit you, and we’re coming to your house.”

Deborah told the network she asked if faxing her bank records to the IRS was an option. After all, that would prove where the money went to.

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But, no: Agents came to her house and insisted on seeing the records for themselves.

“I took out our box of receipts … and we handed it to him, and I said ‘Here’s your receipts’ … We weren’t hiding anything,” she said.

The couple said they’d kept the necessary tabs on all of the expenses for the repairs, since they couldn’t afford to replace their tractor. That didn’t mean the auditor was through milking them, though. Instead, he asked for three years of their financial records.

“He wasn’t satisfied. He kept digging, kept digging. He ended up nailing us. Our tax person was giving us 80 percent on our work vehicles, and he said, ‘No, you can only do 50 percent,'” David Hajda said.

Deborah was shocked over the kind of license that the IRS had to look into their affairs.

“I was very naive about the situation. I had no idea of the power, the scope [of the audit] going in, three years of my life … and me having no control over that, no control over the information he was given,” she said.

“It was very invasive. You feel very attacked because that guy wanted to go back and say, ‘I got her.’”

Host Dana Perino asked David whether he thought the agent had sought them out, so he could hit his quota.

“Probably. They said it flagged it because our expenses were high that year, and it was because of this repair,” David said.

“They want to get you. If they’re coming after you for an audit, they don’t want to see your receipts and go, ‘Oh, OK, you’re good,'” Deborah said.

“They are going to nitpick your life apart, and that’s not what the American dream is for self-employment, small business. That’s just a kick in the teeth to do that to people living the American dream.”

Sadly, the Hajdas’ American dream is different than the Biden administration’s American dream, in which the president’s ambition to radically transform our economy has only been limited by a lack of resources to do so.

Those resources can be effectively dug up, though, by buttressing the IRS and making it more aggressive. Nearly 100,000 employees will certainly do the trick nicely. And make no mistake: They’re not just coming after people making over $400,000 (remember, those employees will go to every level of the IRS), and they don’t just want to see your receipts.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture