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State lawmakers press Boehner on online sales tax

A group representing state lawmakers is urging House Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerPrinciples to unify America Feehery: A possible House Speaker conundrum for Democrats Obama on bipartisanship: 'There is a way to reach out and not be a sap' MORE (R-Ohio) to bring legislation giving state more power to tax online sales to the floor before the end of the year. 

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BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerPrinciples to unify America Feehery: A possible House Speaker conundrum for Democrats Obama on bipartisanship: 'There is a way to reach out and not be a sap' MORE said this month that he had “significant concerns” about the Marketplace Fairness Act, and that the House Judiciary Committee would continue to study the issue.

But for state governments, many of which could sorely use the revenue that would be provided by the online sales tax legislation, the wait for the Marketplace Fairness Act has already been too long.

“With all due respect, legislation to give states the authority to require the collection of sales taxes by remote sellers has been under review by the Judiciary Committee for more than 12 years and the subject of numerous hearings,” Debbie Smith, a Democratic state senator from Nevada, and Curt Bramble, a Republican state senator from Utah, wrote to Boehner.

“The time for consideration and adoption of this important legislation is now, 12 years of congressional consideration and debate is enough.”

Supporters of the online sales tax legislation, including retail groups and the online giant Amazon, have hoped to pair the measure to an extension of a moratorium on taxes on Internet access. The Marketplace Fairness Act would allow states to collect sales tax on online purchases even when the retailers doesn’t have a physical presence in that particular state.

But while the Marketplace Fairness Act has some senior GOP supporters, it also has some prominent Republican opponents, including Boehner and Sens. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzO'Brien on 2024 talk: 'There's all kinds of speculation out there' Ocasio-Cortez, Cruz trade jabs over COVID-19 relief: People 'going hungry as you tweet from' vacation McSally, staff asked to break up maskless photo op inside Capitol MORE (R-Texas) and Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulLoeffler isolating after possible COVID-19 infection Rick Scott tests positive for coronavirus Overnight Defense: Formal negotiations inch forward on defense bill with Confederate base name language | Senators look to block B UAE arms sales | Trump administration imposes Iran sanctions over human rights abuses MORE (R-Ky.), who say the bill amounts to a tax increase on consumers and would be a burden to online retailers.