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Tax E-Commerce Companies? Don't Do It

In case you missed John Sununu's column in The Boston Globe on the wrong-headedness of states taxing e-commerce companies -- and the sheer arrogance of giant predators like Walmart to demand it, check it out here.

And pay close attention, Florida.

Some of the Sunshine State's biggest guns are doing the big-boxer's bidding, promoting an Internet sales tax this legislative session.

According to Sununu, Walmart and others want to pass a law requiring e-commerce companies to collect taxes from consumers on the states' behalf.

"Rather than encumber a growing sector of our economy with an inefficient tax system, states should be searching for ways to streamline and simplify taxes," Sununu writes. He outlines the current system, in which online consumers are supposed to declare purchases to their home state, and argues that transferring this burdensome and complicated system to companies with no physical presence in the states is a bad solution that will create huge headaches for the companies.

"The idea that federal intervention is justified because the state isn't getting its fair share from Zappos shoe sales is a bridge too far," he says. "Its not as though (states) have been denied ample mechanisms for reaching into the pockets of their citizens. Property taxes, excise taxes, business profit taxes, and personal income taxes allow states to collect from everyone who works, lives, or holds assets within their borders."

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