President Bush Affirms Support for Banning Internet Tax

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The Bush administration has reaffirmed its support for extending a ban on taxing goods purchased over the Internet.

Bush spokesman Ari Fleischer said yesterday that the president "favors an extension of the moratorium on Internet taxation," adding that Bush will "continue to work with the Congress for the exact duration of it."

In a speech Tuesday night to the Electronic Industries Alliance, Bush said he favors a permanent ban on "Internet access taxes," meaning taxes that would apply to Internet connections.

"We need to understand how powerful the Internet can be to commerce and growth," Bush said.

Fleischer's comments yesterday reinforced a pledge Bush made during last fall's presidential campaign to support an extension of the moratorium, now set to expire on Oct. 21.

Fleischer said more time is needed to study the merits "so that policy-makers can take a very careful and deliberative look at how this new Internet world is shaping revenues for the government, as well as people's abilities to shop online."

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