This article extends the empirical literature on bureaucratic behavior by modeling the strategic interactions between an enforcement agency, its clients, and its political principals. Specifically, the study focuses on the joint analysis of IRS enforcement decisions and taxpayer compliance behavior in order to fully explore the extent of political controls over the agency. The results suggest that there is a very strong reciprocal relationship between IRS audit levels and taxpayer compliance levels across states and over time and that taxpayer compliance behavior is also influenced by partisan changes in national politics.