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Image: Rep. Cory Gardner: ‘No Appetite’ in House for Online Sales Tax

Rep. Cory Gardner: ‘No Appetite’ in House for Online Sales Tax

By David Yonkman, Washington Correspondent   |   Wednesday, 24 Apr 2013 02:25 PM

House co-sponsors of an Internet sales tax bill are apparently starting to jump ship, according to an influential Republican who has all but declared the measure dead, despite likely Senate approval within a few days.

“There’s no appetite for it [in the House],” Colorado Rep. Cory Gardner told Newsmax Wednesday. “I don’t think there is enough support even among co-sponsors of the bill.”

The Senate is expected to easily pass its version of the Marketplace Fairness Act later this week after voting 74-20 on Monday to bring the bill to the floor.

The measure would greatly expand the ability of states to collect sales taxes across state lines on Internet purchases. Under current law, states can collect sales taxes from retailers only if they have a physical presence in the state — a store, warehouse, or office.

Gardner said he is opposed to the bill because it disadvantages entrepreneurs and start-up companies that don’t have the capacity to manage cross-state tax collections from online buyers. Large retailers like Amazon don’t have the same problem, he says.

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“It’s a sure way to stifle innovation,” Gardner told Newsmax. “You shouldn’t be taxing something that I think should be allowed to grow.”

Republican Rep. Tom McClintock of California, who serves on the House Budget Committee, also opposes the bill. He argues that sales taxes are designed to fund such infrastructure as roads, fire and police protection, and sewer and water projects.

“The rationale of a sales tax is that it is to support the infrastructure of brick-and-mortar stores, all of the things that support a physical presence,” McClintock told Newsmax.

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