POLL: Ohio Voters Reject Internet Sales Tax Law

(Columbus, OH) -- When it comes to a federal law allowing out-of-state tax collectors to reach into the pockets of Ohio’s online merchants, by a 56-31 margin Buckeye State voters have a resounding and simple answer: No! 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 Ohio, strong majorities across many ideological and partisan persuasions also expressed overwhelming support for candidates that oppose e-commerce tax schemes (by a 27-point margin) and indicated their belief that the Internet should remain as free from regulation and taxation as possible (by a 57-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,” 72 percent of respondents were opposed with just 20 percent in favor.

“Common sense reigns in Ohio, where voters strongly believe 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 Ohio 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.”

“Taxes of any kind don’t tend to win in any poll, but our survey is designed to go beyond the simplistic and get to specifics,” said Pete Sepp, Executive Vice President of National Taxpayers Union. “Ohio politicians should take note of their constituents’ views as they study this issue. 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.