Colorado's Democratic legislature and governor thought they were being clever.
By putting the screws to online retailers, they could reap millions of dollars in tax revenues from items sold over the Internet and fill the budget gaps created by their failure to control spending and plan for hard economic times.
According to numbers provided by the governors office, the stimulus package "created or saved" 9,300 Colorado jobs.
It’s almost as if Governor Bill Ritter (pictured) thought that was too many jobs, because with one swipe of his pen he killed more than half that many Colorado jobs.
Ritter and his Democrats in the legislature imposed new rules designed to force retailers into collecting Colorado sales tax on all Internet sales to Colorado residents.
It backfired immediately.
Amazon.com cut ties Monday with Colorado online businesses that help it sell products because of a new state law aimed at getting out-of-state, online retailers to collect sales tax.
The move hurts Colorado businesses -- many of them small, home-based operations -- that earn money by using their Web sites and blogs to link customers to online retailers.
Colorado has at least 4,200 such businesses, known as affiliates or associates, accounting for about 5,000 jobs, and most of them rely on Amazon to some degree, according to their trade group, the Performance Marketing Association.
Governor Ritter has already said he will not run for re-election in November so he is not hurting himself. However, there will be many Democrats in the Colorado legislature who will lose re-election bids in November as a result of this legislative boondoggle.
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