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POLL: Colorado Voters Reject Internet Sales Tax Law

by Douglas Kellogg / /

(Denver, CO) - When it comes to a federal law allowing out-of-state tax collectors to reach into the pockets of Colorado’s online merchants, by a 57-33 margin Rocky Mountain State voters have a resounding and simple answer: Don’t do it! That’s just one of several findings from a statewide poll released today by National Taxpayers Union and R Street Institute.

In the survey of likely 2014 general election voters in Colorado, strong majorities across many ideological and partisan persuasions also expressed overwhelming support for candidates that oppose e-commerce tax schemes (by a 23-point margin) and indicated their belief that the Internet should remain as free from regulation and taxation as possible (by a 45-point margin). One of the most lopsided results concerned federal legislation in Congress called the “Marketplace Fairness Act” – when told (factually) the plan “would allow tax enforcement agents from one state to collect taxes from online retailers based in a different state,” 70 percent of respondents were opposed with just 23 percent in favor.

“When it comes to Internet tax schemes, Colorado voters overwhelmingly support the common-sense position that the Internet should exist to enrich their lives and those of their neighbors, not line the pockets of out-of-state revenue agencies,” said Andrew Moylan, Executive Director and Senior Fellow at the R Street Institute. “While Colorado conservatives strongly oppose such a law, it’s striking that independents and Democrats join them in forcefully rejecting new state tax enforcement powers over the Internet.”

“Our poll results make clear the specific positions of Colorado voters on a critical tax policy matter,” said Lee Schalk, State Government Affairs Manager of National Taxpayers Union. “Colorado politicians from both parties should take note of their constituents’ views as they formulate their own views. Any candidate who had numbers like this Internet tax collection scheme would have to seriously reconsider his or her political future.”

The R Street Institute is a non-profit, non-partisan, public policy research organization (“think tank”). Its mission is to engage in policy research and outreach to promote free markets and limited, effective government.

National Taxpayers Union (NTU), “The Voice of America’s Taxpayers,” was founded in 1969 to work for lower taxes, limited government, and economic freedom at all levels.  The citizen group has 362,000 members nationwide and over  17,000 members in Pennsylvania.