WE R HERE: Representative Chaffetz Attacks Small Business, Consumers, by Introducing New Internet Sales Tax


June 15, 2015

CONTACT: media@werherecoalition.org


WE R HERE: Representative Chaffetz Attacks Small Business, Consumers, by Introducing New Internet Sales Tax


Washington, DC – WE R HERE Executive Director and tax fairness advocate Phil Bond today questioned why Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz “seeks to both take more money out of the pockets of consumers and to pile new taxes and regulations on small businesses”. 

Bond was referring to Chaffetz’s Remote Transaction Parity Act, an old proposal with a new name that would empower states in search of sales tax revenue to reach across their borders and harass Internet-enabled small businesses. Its legislative predecessor, the so-called “Marketplace Fairness Act”, failed to secure Congressional approval last session after the detrimental effects on thousands of small online retailers and their customers came to light. 

Bond released the following statement in response to the Chaffetz bill:

“The thousands of small online retailers that are members of the We R Here coalition are extremely disappointed with the new online taxation bill introduced by Rep. Jason Chaffetz.

“On behalf of our 15,000 small, web-enabled business members, I can tell you that this legislation would push thousands of small online retailers to the brink of bankruptcy, raise costs to consumers, prevent the creation of jobs at the local level, and impose yet another crushing government bureaucracy on our country’s businesses.  

“The Chaffetz bill includes an anti-small business provision that only big retailers and tax collectors could love. His ‘electronic marketplace’ provision strips away any pretense of being sensitive to small retailers and ultimately makes his bill even more harmful to small business than the onerous Marketplace Fairness Act.

“The Chaffetz bill is a tax collector’s dream -- which is no surprise since the Congressman has acknowledged that his bill was inspired by the heavy-handed and misnamed Marketplace Fairness Act.

“Chaffetz’ bill – like MFA – fails to meet the letter and spirit of the widely praised Goodlatte principles. It still empowers tax collectors to roam the Internet for money. It offers an inadequate and evaporating small business exemption that discriminates against platform sellers. It still leaves small online sellers at the mercy of multiple audits from states in which they do not live or work. And finally, the Chaffetz bill raises privacy concerns through a provision that requires sellers to send information about individual consumer transactions to the buyer’s home state.”

“We trust that the House Judiciary Committee will not take up a bill that clearly will damage our economy, and that fails to take the Goodlatte principles seriously.”



WE R HERE is a coalition comprised of small business retailers around the country who are using the Internet and are coming together to ensure government policies are enacted that create a fair marketplace for all types of retail businesses to thrive and innovation to prosper. WE R HERE gives small business online retailers a unified voice, demonstrating to government policy makers and opinion leaders the positive role of online small business retail in the 21st Century economy. The coalition effort mobilizes online retailers to work together to protect them from misguided and predatory laws and regulations that could kill jobs and undermine innovation.