Congressman Steve Cohen

Representing the 9th District of Tennessee

Congressmen Cohen, Ratcliffe Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Protect Consumers from Unfair Taxes on Digital Goods

March 13, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressmen Steve Cohen (D-TN) and John Ratcliffe (R-TX) today introduced legislation to protect consumers from unfair taxes on digital goods and services like those purchased over the internet or on smartphones. The Digital Goods and Services Tax Fairness Act would ensure that digital goods and services are not taxed at a higher rate than their tangible counterparts.  

“Digital goods and services have become a driving force in our national economy,” said Congressman Cohen. “We should make sure consumers are treated fairly and are not taxed unfairly.” 

“The technological developments of the 21st Century are influencing consumers to spend more of their money on digital goods and services, and they shouldn’t be punished for making this choice,” said Congressman Ratcliffe. “In order to keep our markets free and our economy growing, we must ensure that we prevent hardworking Americans from being double-taxed for non-tangible purchases. I’m proud to be working with my House and Senate colleagues on bipartisan legislation that will do just that.”

This legislation would prevent the taxation of MP3 and software downloads, for example, at a higher rate than the tax on music and software CDs. The bill would prevent tax discrimination for consumers who chose to purchase a good or service in digital rather than tangible form.

A Senate version of the measure was introduced today by Senators John Thune (R-S.D.) and Ron Wyden (D-OR).