Washington Stunned as Most of America Opposes the Internet Sales Tax

According to a new poll commissioned by R Street and the National Taxpayers Union, 57 percent of likely voters oppose a federal Internet sales tax legislation, including 66 percent of Republicans.

The figures produced in the new poll are relatively consistent with a Gallup poll taken in June – people still don’t want it.  Politico recalls where the legislation stood in this past spring:

In May, with the support of the White House, 69 senators voted to pass a bill that would force many state-based Internet retailers to charge a sales tax. The House has still not taken the measure up, and some prominent conservative voices have rallied to kill it in committee.

While some members of Congress and a wide array of big special interests were pushing for this terrible tax regime, conservatives fought against it for the good of Americans.  In April, we listed 10 awful things about the Internet sales tax – from the harm it would cause small businesses to the higher costs it would cause for consumers, from taxation without representation to the 46 tax audits from hell online businesses would face.

Interestingly, the poll also indicates that lawmakers who vote for the internet sales tax could face attacks during the midterm elections:

In the Mercury poll, 71 percent of likely GOP primary voters said they would vote for the candidate who opposed “the creation of a new national sales tax collection mandate that applies to every retailer who sells goods and services over the Internet” over someone who supported it.

The new poll tested several other negative messages against the federal push with the full national sample, which could theoretically shape how they attack the law as the fight on the Hill heats up.

When the MFA is described as “a national sales tax collection mandate,” 69 percent said they are opposed — including 62 percent of Democrats.

When those polled were told that “the proposed legislation would allow tax enforcement agents from one state to collect taxes from online retailers based in a different state,” 70 percent opposed and 23 percent supported it.

Republicans and Democrats alike who support the Internet sales tax should take heed.  But the good of the American people – not their reelection – should be their first consideration.  The Internet sales tax would definitely cause a great deal of harm.

Remember, good policy makes for good politics and bad policy makes for bad politics.

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