Michigan Legislators Vote to Tax Internet Sales

The Michigan House of Representatives voted yesterday to allow Michigan to join other states in creating a uniform, nationwide system of collecting and enforcing sales tax on online sales. The bill passed 57-50, and now heads for the Senate.

Conservative Republicans voted against the bill and spoke out after the vote. "The people don't want this policy. Government wants this policy," explained Rep. Gary Woronchak (R-Dearborn).

State-paid teachers unions supported the bill, arguing that schools would lose much-needed revenue if Internet sales are not taxed.

Meanwhile, the National Taxpayers Union (NTU), the nation's largest grassroots taxpayer organization, accused the Michigan state house of pushing through a "stealth tax hike," a "sneak attack" on Michigan taxpayers. "While the U. S. Congress, the President, and most of the states are focused on tax cuts and other measures to help the economy recover, Michigan lawmakers appear determined to bash taxpayers and the economy with this huge tax hike," said NTU President John Berthoud.

NTU condemns the "Streamlined Sales Tax Project," the program currently being promulgated by the National Governors Association, to allow a national sales tax program on Internet sales, overriding the current nexus standard that permits taxation on sales only where the buyer and seller have a substantial presence in the same state.

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