I have to call out the left for spreading misleading information about a bill that passed the House in January and currently sits in committee in the Senate, where it has virtually no chance of passing. The bill is HR7, which prohibits federal funds from being used for abortions, except in cases of rape or incest. It got my attention on Facebook, when I saw a link to a petition to stop legislation that would require rape audits. I clicked on the link which took me to leftaction.com. There was a section where one could type in their information to sign a petition, seeking to block passage of HR7. Leftaction.com was claiming the bill would require the IRS to audit the tax returns of women who claimed a medical expense deduction for an abortion. The woman would have to prove her pregnancy was a result of a rape or incestuous act. The basis for this claim was a provision in the bill that prohibited a tax deduction for the cost of an abortion, except in the case of rape or incest.
Having worked in the income tax field for thirty-three years, I was skeptical. I have never known of any law requiring the IRS to audit any individual just because certain deductions are claimed. Most audits are randomly selected, however, there are audits triggered by deductions or credits that appear to be excessive based on averages for various income levels. Also, when medical deductions are claimed on an income tax return, they are not itemized. The IRS can't tell what the expenses are for, they only see the total amount of expenses claimed on the return. So they wouldn't know if an expense for an abortion was included in that total.
Politifact rated this claim as false. They referenced the provision of the bill limiting the tax deduction for an abortion to cases of rape or incest. Specifically, Politifact said the provision was removed from the bill in the final version sent to the Senate.
The claim of rape audits as a part of HR7 is as blatantly false and misleading as the claim of death panels as a part of the ACA. If you see this petition on social media, please let the person posting it know it's false. Let's call out blatant lies every time we see them, regardless of which party puts them out.