Can the IRS Police Taxes and Obamacare?

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The House Ways and Means oversight subcommittee is investigating whether the Internal Revenue Service can police the new health care law while simultaneously collecting taxes.

The probe comes after the Supreme Court upheld the law's health insurance mandate, saying it could survive as a tax.

In about 2½ years, Americans will need to provide proof on their tax returns that they have health care coverage.

The IRS will be tasked with providing tax breaks and incentives to help pay for health insurance, as well as imposing penalties on those who don't comply with the new law.

Under the law, the agency will need to come up with new regulations, forms, computer programs, and outreach programs to explain changes to taxpayers and tax professionals. Thousands of new workers will need to be hired.

All of this would require a budget increase for the agency. House Republicans are already planning to stop that from happening.

"Knowing the complexity of the health law, there's no question that the IRS is going to struggle with this," said Rep. Charles Boustany Jr., R-La., chairman of the House Ways and Means oversight subcommittee.

"The IRS wants more resources," he said. "Well, we need to start digging down into what are they doing with the resources and personnel."

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