PERRYBLOG: Sen. Gardner’s trouble with telling time and clicking his heels for a tax-free Internet

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online salesColorado’s nascent Sen. Cory Gardner is learning the ropes of the U.S. Senate and how to tell time.

Forever, Senator, is a long, long time.

The congressman-turned-senator from Yuma hasn’t quite grasped that yet. Why else would he proudly become an “original co-sponsor” of a bill by Sen. John Thune, R-South Dakota, that would make permanent the Internet Tax Freedom Act of 1998.

“We should never tax the internet,” Gardener said in a statement today. “That’s a position I supported in the House of Representatives, it was one of the pillars of my Four Corners Plan for Colorado, and it’s why I’m proud to be an original co-sponsor of this legislation.”

I’m for no taxes as much, actually more, than the next guy. But what Gardner and Co. overlook is that the current system unfairly taxes Internet sales where “brick-and-mortar” stores exist in your state. If you order a new blender from Wal-Mart, Target or Best Buy, you pay sales taxes on it. If you order the same blender from WowGetYourOnlineBlendersSansTaxesRightHere.com, you pay no taxes.

The three mega-retailers and many others support Colorado with jobs and taxes. WowWhateverSomethingOrOther.com doesn’t do crap for Colorado and does nothing for the state but suck up sales taxes. And those taxes? They pay for roads, snow plows, teachers, cops, stuff like that.

The reason online sales were tax free to begin with is because, back in the day, who would go to the AOL Intertubes to trust Lord-only-knows what on the other side of the WWW to take your money and send you stuff? So, to get the whole thing going, it was tax free.

It’s going now. A University of Tennessee study and the National Conference of State Legislatures estimate that online and catalog sales kept $23 billion in taxes from states and local communities in 2012.

That’s a lot of asphalt, Senator Gardner.

I’m down with not paying taxes for anything, but I’m also pretty keen on keeping the cops, paved roads and enough government to keep oil companies from washing their trucks out in the Platte River. I’m also pretty keen on treating businesses that invest in Colorado at least as good or bad as the ones sucking cash out of the state at their, and our, expense.

“Wherever the heavy hand of government taxation inserts itself, innovation, growth, and jobs are quick to disappear,” Gardner said.

No. Greed and corruption are economic fun crushers, Senator. Unfair taxation and inefficient distribution of resources are what kills progress and my car’s front-end alignment.

“Never,” Senator? Never is a long, long time.

— Dave Perry, Editor

Gardner’s Feb. 10 press release

Gardner: “Never Tax the Internet” 

Washington, D.C.‎ – Senator Cory Gardner (R-CO) announced today that he is an original co-sponsor of legislation to keep the internet tax-free indefinitely.‎  The legislation is being introduced by Senator John Thune (R-SD), and would make permanent the Internet Tax Freedom Act of 1998, which prohibits taxes on internet access or e-commerce. 

“Wherever the heavy hand of government taxation inserts itself, innovation, growth, and jobs are quick to disappear,” Gardner said. “Businesses and customers are increasingly engaging online, and American entrepreneurs are making leaps and bounds forward in creating the companies, services, and communications platforms that will dominate the future of our economy. Keeping the internet tax-free permanently is the only way to ensure that the kind of progress we’ve made online will continue.

 

“We should never tax the internet. That’s a position I supported in the House of Representatives, it was one of the pillars of my Four Corners Plan for Colorado, and it’s why I’m proud to be an original co-sponsor of this legislation.”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

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Cory Gardner is a member of the U.S. Senate serving Colorado. He sits on the Energy & Natural Resources Committee, the Foreign Relations Committee, the Commerce, Science, & Transportation Committee, and the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Committee, and is the Chairman of the Subcommittee on East Asian and Pacific Affairs.  

 

B40B Dirksen Senate Office Building, Washington, DC 20515

(202) 224-5941

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Michael Rowley
Michael Rowley
7 years ago

In 1913 there were paved roads, schools,police and fire departments and no taxes. This is typical Tax and spend politics.

ezaspie
ezaspie
7 years ago
Reply to  Michael Rowley

There were taxes before 1913. 1913 was just the first year a permanent income tax was instituted, allowed by the 16th amendment. Read what you wrote it just makes little to no sense. The ability for our government to collect taxes is in our constitution.

Jim Wedding
Jim Wedding
7 years ago

Dave, good premise but your facts are wrong. The tax on the internet that Sen. Gardner mentions has nothing to do with sales tax on tangible personal property. Internet sales are not tax free because there is no tax on “internet access””, they are not taxable (yet) because the companies that sell online do not have “nexus” (see “commerce clause) like the Wal-Mart’s and Home Depot’s of the world do. This is what the Market Fairness Act was designed to address. But yes, both internet access and online sales should both be taxed.

gofastgo
gofastgo
7 years ago
Reply to  Jim Wedding

But Jim, you must understand, Gardner’s a Republican…..

Keith Yockey
Keith Yockey
7 years ago

Sen. Gardner is supporting ITFA … access taxes, not Sales Tax. The Sales Tax bill would be MFA. Apples & Oranges.

Frank2525
Frank2525
7 years ago

When I ordered a mini-ryder scooter from Florida on internet, I was quoted a price on phone, line secured, gave my VISA number, and scooter purchase was completed within a five minute period. Payment extracted from my account, paid to factory, and order sent to FedX to pick up scooter at the factory. This was at 11 AM, scooter picked up at 4 PM, taken to Orlando FL, then to Ft. Worth Texas on FedX truck. Came north to Ft. Lupton, CO by Thurs evening. I received phone call Thurs, that it would be delivered to my home on Friday afternoon. Was delivered by FedX truck to my front porch. I am sure the agent in Tallahassee FL, had their commission, Factory was paid, and FedX was paid. And since FedX in Colorado pays taxes, licenses their trucks, and pays their driver. all was paid. I suspect cost of scooter, taxes, transportation was all paid. That scooter did not miraculously get delivered through the telephone wires. So I see no reason why I should be charged another tax on purchase in Colorado. —————Think Dave must have missed Industrial Funding in his college courses. And I have an aversion to double taxation without representation.

Frank2525
Frank2525
7 years ago

added note: Total paid was $739.00 for mini-ryder scooter. Dealers here advertised that scooter for $995.00 plus shipping, plus tax, and 2 weeks wait. Direct purchase was completed in 4 days (Monday to Friday) and tracked all the way. I highly prefer the internet.