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Conservative Think Tank Opposes Internet Sales Tax

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Jim DeMint, the President the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank based in Washington DC, spoke with Rich Zeoli on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT about their opposition to the idea of an internet sales tax that would collect the a tax on every product sold online.

DeMint said implementing that practice would break with the current system and place an undue burden on internet sellers.


"If you don't have a physical location in Arkansas, you are not required to collect sales taxes on the product that you ship to Arkansas. Now, if you have a facility there, a distribution facility, like Amazon is now doing in every state, then you do have to pay the sales taxes. What they're suggesting, if you're sitting in New Jersey and you ship all over the country, that you have to collect taxes where ever those go, sales taxes. There are 10,000 sales tax jurisdictions in America. It's not just 50 states or all the counties. They have all these local options."

He believes such a law is not only unnecessary, but claimed the largest internet retailers have begun supporting the concept to create a competitive advantage.

"This idea of forcing every little internet business in the country to pay sales taxes in all the states, it's not really needed. Most of the large companies that sell on the internet have locations in every state. They have to pay the sales taxes and, interestingly, Amazon, who is obviously a big internet retailer used to be against the internet sales tax until they decided they were going to have a distribution center in every state so they could deliver in the same day. Now, they want and internet sales tax so that all their competition has to pay the sales taxes too."

DeMint was citizens to keep a close eye on such proposals and alert their local representatives to their opposition.

"Whenever folks aren't paying attention a bill like this can easily go through Congress attached to something else and it just becomes one more regulatory quagmire that small businesses have to deal with around the country."

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