Americans for Tax Reform: Pledge Takers Can’t Vote For Internet Tax Bill

While the Senate is likely to pass the Marketplace Fairness Act being rammed through the Senate past the red tape of committees and onto the floor for a vote later today or by the end of this week by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NEV.), House Republicans face a roadblock that they put in place themselves when it comes time to vote for their Internet tax bill: a pledge.

Katie McAuliffe, federal affairs manager and executive director for digital liberty at Americans for Tax Reform pointed out at the Politico-sponsored "Emerging Tax Leaders" event that any member of Congress who took the Grover Norquist / Americans for Tax Reform pledge have to vote against the bill, because it "raises taxes." For those Republicans who signed onto this pledge (likely while running for the office or running to hold on to it) there's no gray areas when it comes to taxes in this particular bill that would give state more power to demand that online retailers collect sales tax – even if the company in question doesn't have a physical location within its borders.

"There’s really not any way an elected official [who signed the pledge] can vote for this," she said. "It’s a problem because opponents can say, 'Hey, you raised taxes.'"

The Senate's version of the bill will easily pass the chamber, according to Politico because almost all Democratic members support it and half of Republicans have backed it as well. One Democrat who does not support the bill is Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.), who is livid that Harry Reid managed to get the bill past his committee which has oversight on taxes…

When asked about the argument that this bill levels the playing field for traditional retailers, McAuliffe said that the tax code "should also be simple, and this isn’t simple. … It’s definitely raising taxes."

Source: Politico



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  1. 0
    ZippyDSMlee says:

    Why not just go to a consumption tax of 40-50% and exempt people under a max of 150K(family of 4)? Then make school and most healthcare free…..

  2. 0
    E. Zachary Knight says:

    I would be ok with the idea of charging sales tax, if and only if, the sales tax laws of all the US were simplified in some way to make compliancy easy.

    The easiest way for this to work is to only charge the sales tax from the location of the online business. So if your business is located in Redmond Washington, you would charge Redmond sales tax for all orders. Just like brick and mortar stores work.

    Another way to make compliancy easier is to charge a single national rate that is dispersed to the states. Another is to only charge a single rate per state rather than hundreds or thousands per state.

    But the way the current law is written, it is a no go and will kill many online businesses.

    E. Zachary Knight
    Divine Knight Gaming
    Oklahoma Game Development
    Rusty Outlook
    Random Tower
    My Patreon

  3. 0
    Sleaker says:

    Every major highway in Oregon is limited to 55 mph except for specific corridors of I-5 that are rural (there may be a few other exclusions too)

  4. 0
    Infophile says:

    The biggest issue here is ignorance of the law. The vast majority of people don't even realize they're supposed to do this. For everything else they do, sales tax is charged by the seller, and so they assume it will always be taken care of for them, and if it isn't, that just means it doesn't apply.

    One option would be to build better public awareness of this fact, but that would lead to further complicating tax day for most people. It seems a lot more logical to me to just normalize it so sales tax is collected by the seller in these cases.

  5. 0
    Neeneko says:

    While it is a tricky (and debated) statistic, speed limits tend to decrease the amount of, well, death, which is often considered a benefit.

    Driving in a shared environment is one of those activities where you take risk not only for yourself but everyone around you, so one can not even use the 'well, I want to go fast, it should be my choice if I want to increase my risk or not' argument.

    Now, one can argue what speed limits are appropriate for any particular stretch and population, and there have been back and forth arguments about what the impact of speed limits really is on fatalities, but it would be inaccurate to say they simply have no benifit.

  6. 0
    Neeneko says:

    They feel antiquated because most people stick to within 10mph of them.  It is a sheep buffer thing, our highways can afford a certain percentage of the population breaking the rules in a significant way,… but if you increase the number of people going speeds well beyond the spec of the highway, fatalities increase.. and often it is not the speeder who ends up dead.

    It is a bit like drunk driving, one is not just taking their own risk when they do it, they are taking a risk for everyone else in the shared space.. thus rules are in place that might ruin some individual's fun but leave the whole space better for everyone.

  7. 0
    Papa Midnight says:

    Agreed. There is no excuse as to why I can legally do 75mph on I-15 going between So. Cal and Nevada, but cannot legally top 65mph on I-95 between BWI and DC.

    Most of the nations speed limits are truly antiquated.

  8. 0
    E. Zachary Knight says:

    "Most people dont do this, which means they are tax evading (a crime)."

    This is one of those things that should raise a different set of questions or concerns. If people are not complying with a law en masse, perhaps it is a problem with the law in question. Perhaps it is time to get rid of the law in question rather than try to ramp up enforcement.

    E. Zachary Knight
    Divine Knight Gaming
    Oklahoma Game Development
    Rusty Outlook
    Random Tower
    My Patreon

  9. 0
    Thaylin says:

    There is no tax increase in the bill. All it does it allow states to force the collection of taxes ALREADY OWED. At the end of the year you are supposed to state on your taxes what you purchased so it can be taxed. Most people dont do this, which means they are tax evading (a crime).


    I dont support the bill, but for issues other that morality or raising taxes.

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