Landrieu: A Road Block on the Internet Superhighway
Senator objects to permanent ban on Internet taxation

Washington, DC – With the November 1st expiration date of the Internet Tax Freedom Act quickly approaching, the Senate was poised to vote on a permanent extension of the ban on Internet taxation Thursday night.  However, Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA) voiced objection to S. 2128, the Permanent Internet Tax Freedom Act, effectively halting the vote.  The Senate consideration of S. 2128 follows the Tuesday passage in the House of a temporary extension of the current moratorium.

While the senator stated that her objection was on behalf of Senator Tom Carper (D-DE), she helped to thwart a similar bill in 2003. 

“Yesterday Senator Landrieu took a stand against taxpayers, innovation and economic growth by blocking a vote on the Permanent Internet Tax Freedom Act,” said taxpayer advocate Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “With broad support for permanently banning Internet taxes, Landrieu’s efforts to stand in the way of S. 2128 are surprising – especially after her constituents relied heavily on Internet communication following Hurricane Katrina.”

The House extension, which passed with a vote of 405 to 2, does not make the current moratorium permanent, despite broad support for a permanent ban on taxing Internet access.  Rep. Anne Eshoo’s (D-CA) permanent bill, which has 238 cosponsors, was not considered on the floor, nor were amendments allowed under the rules for the vote.  In addition to the temporary extension of the tax prohibition, HR 3678 also extends the grandfather provisions for the handful of states that had taxed the Internet prior to 1998 and exempts states that collect gross receipts taxes.

 “The House’s temporary extension is good step toward a permanent ban,” continued Norquist. “As the Senate moves forward, I urge senators to support at least the temporary extension, as well as the permanent ban on Internet access taxes."