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Press Release

CSE URGES YES VOTE ON S. 150

11/05/2003

Citizens for a Sound Economy (CSE) and its 280,000 members urge the U.S. Senate to VOTE YES and pass the “Internet Tax Nondiscrimination Act of 2003” (S. 150). This bill would make permanent the current ban on Internet access taxes and multiple or discriminatory taxes on electronic commerce.

S. 150 would convert the existing Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) moratorium into a permanent ban. When the ITFA was passed in 1998, only 26.2 percent of American households had Internet access, according to the Department of Commerce. Forrester Research, a technology industry research firm, estimates that in 2002, 64 percent of American households had Internet access. The significant growth of Internet access is a vital component of the American economy that allows businesses and consumers to connect in ways not possible in the past.

Permitting states and localities to enact a hodgepodge of new taxes would damage our economic growth and increase the digital divide between Americans who have Internet access and those who don’t. A tax on Internet access would retard the growth of households connecting to the Internet while impeding e-commerce. S. 150 updates and makes permanent the ITFA in ways that ensure all methods of Internet access—dial-up, DSL, cable, satellite, or wireless—are covered by the moratorium. By permanently ending Internet access taxes, this bill is a responsible step towards making sure all Americans can afford to reach the benefits of the Information Age.

CSE will count the vote on S. 150 as a KEY VOTE, used in calculating the CSE Economic Scorecard. The CSE Economic Scorecard is used to determine eligibility for the Jefferson Award, which recognizes Senators with voting records that support economic freedom.

Respectfully,

Paul Beckner
President
Citizens for a Sound Economy