Heidi Heitkamp Wanted To Tax The Internet Before It Even Existed
We’re well into the campaign silly season now, and with Democrat Senate candidate Heidi Heitkamp’s campaign flooding the zone with self-serving polling numbers and frivolous campaign law complaints it’s sort of hard to focus on real issues. But let’s focus on one anyway.
Heitkamp has been doing her best impression of a Republican this election cycle, even running ads touting her record in combating government power grabs, but it’s worth remembering that back when Heitkamp was North Dakota’s tax commissioner in the 1990′s she was behind a Supreme Court case which could have been one of the disastrous policies in what was then the internet’s short history.
The case, which you can see below, was Quill Corp. vs. North Dakota, also known as its full name Quill Corp. vs. North Dakota by and through its Tax Commissioner Heidi Heitkamp.
The case addressed whether or not states could collect sales tax revenues from online businesses that had no physical presence within a given state. Heitkamp, among others, wanted what was then the brand-new online retail industry to pay sales taxes to the states. The Supreme Court, ruling in May of 1992, decided otherwise. Which was a major turning point in the world of online retailers.
In 1992, online shopping wasn’t nearly what it is today. Amazon wouldn’t be founded until 1994. Ebay wouldn’t be around until 1995. But even so, big-government liberals like Heitkamp wanted a slice of the online retail pie. Had they gotten their way, those companies and others too numerous to mention might not be around today. The ease, convenience, selection and savings we enjoy today from online shopping might not exist today, or at least might merely exist in a greatly diminished capacity, had Heidi Heitkamp gotten her way back in 1992.
Heitkamp may portray herself today, in her campaign for the Senate, as a leader who would fight to protect North Dakotans from excessive government. But that’s not what her past is, and this case proves it. She argued policy that would have been devastating for the fledgling online retail industry all the way to the Supreme Court. Whatever she may say about her philosophy on such matters now, we know that actions speak louder than words.
And Heitkamp’s actions from 1992 aren’t anything we should want in the US Senate.