Online internet computer shopping

Internet Tax: It’s A Generational Thing

Last week, the Senate approved the so-called Marketplace Fairness Act, more commonly known as the Internet sales tax. Proponents tried to paint the vote as evidence of overwhelming support for the bill. That is simply not the case, though.  As you dig deeper in to the numbers, it becomes apparent the push from big government and big government special interests was losing momentum.

On the final vote, a majority of Republicans voted against the Internet sales tax, splitting 22-21. Furthermore, the appearance of an age demographic split amongst supporters and opponents signals an uphill battle in the younger, more conservative House.

All seven Republican Senators age 50 and under voted against the Marketplace Fairness Act:  Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), 44;  Ted Cruz (R-TX), 42;  Jeff Flake (R-AZ), 50; Mike Lee (R-UT), 41 Rand Paul (R-KY), 50; Marco Rubio (R-FL), 41; Tim Scott (R-SC), 47.  In the House, 79 of the 233 Republicans are age 50 or under.

Twelve of thirteen Senate Republicans age 55 and under voted against the Marketplace Fairness Act.  In the House, there are 118 Republicans – more than half the conference – are age 55 or under.

A couple more quick stats reinforce the demographic divide in the Senate:

  • The average age of Republicans opposing the Internet sales tax was 58
  • The average age of Republicans supporting the Internet sales tax was 64

If this demographic trend holds, House leadership and others should take notice.  In likelihood, a majority of the House Republican Conference would be opposed to this dangerous extension of state taxing power into other states.

One final thought. The RNC’s Growth and Opportunity report recognized, “many of the youngest voters and new 2016 voters, their perception of the two parties was born during the Barack Obama era.”  The report urged lawmakers to “Promote forward-looking, positive policy proposals that unite young voters.”

If the GOP wants to attract young voters, placing a massive compliance burden on Internet retailers isn’t the way to go.

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The average age of Republicans opposing the Internet sales tax was 58. Supporters average age was 64.

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Lawmakers take note: voting for the Internet Sales Tax alienates younger voters.

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Please Share Your Thoughts
  • FedTax

    Wow. So Heritage is painting this as an age issue now? Why? No matter how Heritage tries to paint this issue to recruit support for their position, ultimately the reason Republicans (and Democrats) support this bill is because opposing it is a vote to encourage the most widely exploited form of tax evasion in history.

    Fact: sales tax is due in 46 states on all internet purchases (and has been due for all out-of-state purchases in these states for at least 50 years in most states).

    Fact: most online retailers dont collect the tax due because they dont have to, thanks to a 1967 SCOTUS ruling (though outside of the US they ALL collect point of sale consumption taxes – think HST/GST/VAT – in ALL other countries because failure to do so is treasonous).

    Question: why does Heritage oppose minimiztion of tax evasion?

    • http://harrypotter.wikia.com/wiki/Veritaserum Veritaserum

      FedTax is a for-profit company. This account is managed by their CEO David Campbell. Campbell has repeatedly mislead the public, the media and even Congress in an attempt to profit off of unsuspecting taxpayers and small businesses.
      http://emainstreet.org/tax-cloud-and-the-marketplace-fairness-act/
      Can you really trust your businesses (and private data) to a company that doesn’t tell the truth?

  • Thomas Carlson

    FedTax just wants their cash cow to come in. They will get subsidized by the States since they are one of the software providers that is set up to calculate the sales tax. Everything they post is because they want the money. To the owners of FedTax please show us your personal tax returns so we can see where you claimed the use tax for online purchases made by your family members.
    This legislation does have an age issue that has not been discussed.
    According to the language in the pending act States must, “Provide software free of charge for remote sellers that calculates sales and use taxes due on each transaction at the time the transaction is completed..”

    The calculation of sales tax is impossible for traditional mail orders. We do have customers that purchase our items via traditional mail order. We sell alot of our products to the elderly.

    Many people do not have access to computers or the Internet. This includes many low-income people and the elderly. Many of these people still order their products from mail order catalogs. Many Internet companies also offer offline options to order their items via traditional mail order. In order to accurately calculate the sales tax owed on their purchase these groups would need to have access to the Internet and calculate the sales taxes due when they write their check for payment. Since each state, county, city and Indian tribe has taxing authority this would be impossible to actually calculate the tax due on each item. The mail order catalog would have to have a complex set of taxes broken down by each zip code and taxing authority in our country.

    The Marketplace Fairness Act is too complex and is discriminatory in nature to the elderly and low-income individuals. It assumes that sales tax calculating software is available for everyone.