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Internet Sales Tax Bill Expected

Senator Dick Durbin to introduce legislation

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Every so often, the idea of an Internet sales tax circulates, stirring up controversy and sparking debates about fairness.  Now, it’s apparently that time again, as a report’s indicated Senator Dick Durbin intends to introduce a bill sometime this month.

Declan McCullagh wrote earlier today after speaking to a Democratic aide, “The proposal–expected to be made public soon after Tax Day–would rewrite the ground rules for Internet and mail order sales by eliminating the ability of Americans to shop at Web sites like Amazon.com and Overstock.com without paying state sales taxes.”

That’s sure to upset a lot of people who are accustomed to saving money by shopping online, and when it comes to nonessential things like music and movies, an Internet sales tax may decrease sales for a time, given the state of the economy.  And/or increase piracy rates, for that matter.

(image)Traditional retailers are no doubt hoping to see more customers visit their brick and mortar stores, however, which could happen if online retailers like Amazon lose a key pricing advantage.

Also, it seems that with or without significant amounts of cost-cutting, most states’ budgets could use an influx of cash these days.

So we’ll see what happens.  As noted earlier, this won’t exactly be the first time the idea of an Internet sales tax has been put up for debate, and powerful organizations sit on both sides of the issue.  We won’t bombard you with every single soapbox press release, but stay tuned for further significant developments.

Internet Sales Tax Bill Expected


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  • Ann Nonymoua

    Typical tax and spend democrat.

    • http://www.webpronews.com/ Chris Richardson

      As opposed to the last regime which just spent.

  • http://taxcloud.net Beatrice Vaccaro

    The CNET article missed an important point: This bill would NOT levy new taxes on Internet sales. Sales tax is already due on Internet sales. Right now consumers are supposed to calculate the tax due themselves and remit it directly to the state.

    All the proposed bill would do is shift the burden of calculating, reporting, and remitting from consumers to retailers. The bill does NOT raise taxes or create a new tax!

    • http://www.webpronews.com/ Doug Caverly

      True. Only it’s a good bet that most people don’t tally up their online purchases come tax time, and the IRS doesn’t seem inclined to raid folks’ homes in search of DVDs from Amazon.

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