Editorial Board, Wall Street Journal:
Few privileges in the world are greater than U.S. citizenship, so why are a record number of Americans giving it up these days? The U.S. Treasury Department reported this week that 1,426 Americans turned in their passports between July and September, more than in any previous quarter. The total for the year is on pace to far exceed last year’s all-time-high of 3,415.
As recently as the George W. Bush years, only about 480 Americans renounced their citizenship annually. But in 2010 the Pelosi Congress and Barack Obama enacted the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, or Fatca. Aimed at tax evaders, the law has mostly made financial life hellish for law-abiding Americans living overseas, of whom there are some eight million.