On Wednesday, Speaker Boehner stood firm against an Internet sales tax. Speaker Boehner said the Marketplace Fairness Act (MFA) will not come to the floor this Congress, preventing the Internet sales tax (IST) mandate from coming to a vote during the lame-duck session of the 113th Congress.
We expect that his statement also means that IST will not come to the House floor as part of a package either.
The Marketplace Fairness Act sought to impose one state’s sales tax on the residents of a different state during cross-border online transactions. This mandate would have unfairly subjected citizens of one state to the taxation whims of another.
Furthermore, MFA would have allowed for potential audits of businesses and individuals from other states.
This inherently unbalanced mandate would undermined federalism while giving states the power to enforce their ideology on others.
Opponents of Internet freedom have attempted to force MFA through Congress by attaching MFA to the expiration of the Internet access tax moratorium. This agglomeration, known as the Marketplace and Internet Tax Fairness Act (MITFA), is an attempt to bundle the Internet sales tax mandate with a 10-year ban on taxing access to the Internet. This is a cheap political ploy to force through the controversial MFA while holding hostage the widely supported Permanent Internet Tax Freedom Act (PITFA). Since the Internet Tax Moratorium is set to expire on December 11th, it is vital that Internet freedom be extended.
It is crucial that Speaker Boehner was able to dispel any hopes of passing MFA in this Congress. It is now essential that Congress pass a permanent Internet Tax Moratorium in order to end this attempt to inhibit digital liberty once and for all.