Sen. Boozman (R-AR) voices support for the Main Street Fairness Act

Senator Boozman (R-AR)

Talk Politics Segment: Senator Boozman supports online sales tax collection

Senator John Boozman (R-AR) gave an interview with Roby Brock on Talk Politics on Monday and said that he believed online retailers should collect sales tax, just as bricks-and-mortar retailers do. For Senator Boozman, it seems to be an issue of fairness and states’ rights:

[Where I live] sales tax is about 9 percent . . . and so when [bricks-and-mortar retailers] start out 9 percent behind [because they have to collect sales tax and online retailers don’t], then you’ve got problems. . . .

When you look at the trajectory, online sales are heading just upwards as quickly as they can do. If you’d asked me this question ten years ago I’d [have said] no, leave the internet alone, let them establish themselves. Right now they’re very much established, and so I don’t think it’s fair. . . .

I think it’s a states’ rights issue. I think the states ought to be able to allow [online sales tax collection], and I think . . . we need to make it such that the states can . . . enforce it, and then go from there. But I do think right now it’s not a level playing field, and you look at rural America, it’s very very difficult right now with the economy that we’ve got, but when you have this tremendous inequity it makes it that much harder.

We couldn’t agree more. States should be able to determine for themselves whether and how sales tax should be collected on online purchases, just like any other kind of purchase, and online and bricks-and-mortar retailers should all play by the same rules.

However, we are puzzled but encouraged by one statement Senator Boozman made: that he didn’t really like the Durbin bill (the Main Street Fairness Act) but would be working with Senator Durbin. We hope this signals a renewed sense of compromise to achieve a common good.

You can see the interview for yourself here; the comments on online sales tax collection begin at 19:12 and last just under two minutes. A summary of the interview is available here.

Bravo, Senator Boozman! Thank you for having the courage to speak out on this important issue and for committing to help protect states rights and local businesses.

6 Responses to Sen. Boozman (R-AR) voices support for the Main Street Fairness Act

  1. R. Kumar says:

    Repeating my posted comment to your previous blog entry,
    On the other hand you have this to temper one’s enthusiasm for Sen. Durbin bill:

    US senator sees regs on online taxes years off
    Senator: Federal regulations for online sales taxes for retailers like Amazon 3 to 4 years off

  2. […] numerous Republican politicians have voiced their support for this legislation—among them, Senator John Boozman, Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam, and Indiana State Senator Luke Kenley. There is absolutely nothing […]

  3. […] (as our regular readers know, we come down firmly on the side of “yes,” for many good reasons), whether or not online purchases should be subject to sales tax is not in question. They already […]

  4. […] by a Democrat, but it has lots of Republican supporters, among them Senator Bob Corker (R-TN), Senator John Boozman (R-AR), and Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam (not to mention all the Republican supporter in state […]

  5. […] legislation allowing states to require online retailers to collect sales tax, for [many] [good] [reasons]. Share […]

  6. […] U.S. Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Mike Enzi (R-WY), Roy Blunt (R-MO),  Bob Corker (R-TN) and John Boozman (R-AR), Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam, Maine Governor Paul LePage, and many local lawmakers, such as […]

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