Big box retailers see a clear victory here, and believe the ruling will level the playing field with purely Internet sellers, at least to some degree. While most brick-and-mortar chains also have a significant online presence themselves, and this ruling will impact those sales, most are pleased that sellers without physical stores will now be forced to deal with levying taxes on purchases.
State and local governments, however, may be the biggest winners. For years, they have complained that not being able to capture sales tax on purchases made online by state residents has cost them tens of billions of dollars in revenue.
“State and local governments have really been dealing with a nightmare scenario for several years now,” said Carl Davis, research director at the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, a Washington think tank. “This is going to allow state and local governments to improve their tax enforcement and to put local business on a more level playing field.”