Vertical Diffusion and the Shifting Politics of Electronic Commerce

Andrew J Karch, Aaron Rosenthal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Since the late 1990s, Congress and the states have debated how to treat electronic commerce for purposes of sales taxation. Frustrated by their limited progress at the national level, advocates of policy change attempted to generate vertical diffusion by using increasingly aggressive state-level actions to press Congress to act. The state initiatives provided national legislators with an “opportunity to learn,” and a systematic analysis of congressional policymaking suggests that vertical diffusion affected the early stages of the legislative process. State policies influenced the specific options that national officials considered, the rhetoric they employed, and, less consistently, bill cosponsorship patterns. The impact of vertical diffusion receded, however, as the congressional debate continued. Its muted effect during the later stages of the legislative process implies that national officials do not necessarily learn from what occurs in the “laboratories of democracy.” In addition to shedding light on the shifting politics of electronic commerce, this study illustrates the benefits both of studying the impact of vertical diffusion on individual decision-making and of conceptualizing vertical diffusion as a process rather than as an outcome to be explained.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)22-43
Number of pages22
JournalState Politics and Policy Quarterly
Volume16
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016

Fingerprint

electronic commerce
politics
taxation
bill
sales
rhetoric
Electronic Commerce
democracy
decision making

Keywords

  • electronic commerce
  • federalism
  • marketplace fairness
  • policy diffusion
  • policy process
  • public policy
  • sales and use tax

Cite this

Vertical Diffusion and the Shifting Politics of Electronic Commerce. / Karch, Andrew J; Rosenthal, Aaron.

In: State Politics and Policy Quarterly, Vol. 16, No. 1, 01.03.2016, p. 22-43.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{d50c06bc1146474da4f1d42bfc6ab4dc,
title = "Vertical Diffusion and the Shifting Politics of Electronic Commerce",
abstract = "Since the late 1990s, Congress and the states have debated how to treat electronic commerce for purposes of sales taxation. Frustrated by their limited progress at the national level, advocates of policy change attempted to generate vertical diffusion by using increasingly aggressive state-level actions to press Congress to act. The state initiatives provided national legislators with an “opportunity to learn,” and a systematic analysis of congressional policymaking suggests that vertical diffusion affected the early stages of the legislative process. State policies influenced the specific options that national officials considered, the rhetoric they employed, and, less consistently, bill cosponsorship patterns. The impact of vertical diffusion receded, however, as the congressional debate continued. Its muted effect during the later stages of the legislative process implies that national officials do not necessarily learn from what occurs in the “laboratories of democracy.” In addition to shedding light on the shifting politics of electronic commerce, this study illustrates the benefits both of studying the impact of vertical diffusion on individual decision-making and of conceptualizing vertical diffusion as a process rather than as an outcome to be explained.",
keywords = "electronic commerce, federalism, marketplace fairness, policy diffusion, policy process, public policy, sales and use tax",
author = "Karch, {Andrew J} and Aaron Rosenthal",
year = "2016",
month = "3",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1177/1532440015593811",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "16",
pages = "22--43",
journal = "State Politics and Policy Quarterly",
issn = "1532-4400",
publisher = "University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Vertical Diffusion and the Shifting Politics of Electronic Commerce

AU - Karch, Andrew J

AU - Rosenthal, Aaron

PY - 2016/3/1

Y1 - 2016/3/1

N2 - Since the late 1990s, Congress and the states have debated how to treat electronic commerce for purposes of sales taxation. Frustrated by their limited progress at the national level, advocates of policy change attempted to generate vertical diffusion by using increasingly aggressive state-level actions to press Congress to act. The state initiatives provided national legislators with an “opportunity to learn,” and a systematic analysis of congressional policymaking suggests that vertical diffusion affected the early stages of the legislative process. State policies influenced the specific options that national officials considered, the rhetoric they employed, and, less consistently, bill cosponsorship patterns. The impact of vertical diffusion receded, however, as the congressional debate continued. Its muted effect during the later stages of the legislative process implies that national officials do not necessarily learn from what occurs in the “laboratories of democracy.” In addition to shedding light on the shifting politics of electronic commerce, this study illustrates the benefits both of studying the impact of vertical diffusion on individual decision-making and of conceptualizing vertical diffusion as a process rather than as an outcome to be explained.

AB - Since the late 1990s, Congress and the states have debated how to treat electronic commerce for purposes of sales taxation. Frustrated by their limited progress at the national level, advocates of policy change attempted to generate vertical diffusion by using increasingly aggressive state-level actions to press Congress to act. The state initiatives provided national legislators with an “opportunity to learn,” and a systematic analysis of congressional policymaking suggests that vertical diffusion affected the early stages of the legislative process. State policies influenced the specific options that national officials considered, the rhetoric they employed, and, less consistently, bill cosponsorship patterns. The impact of vertical diffusion receded, however, as the congressional debate continued. Its muted effect during the later stages of the legislative process implies that national officials do not necessarily learn from what occurs in the “laboratories of democracy.” In addition to shedding light on the shifting politics of electronic commerce, this study illustrates the benefits both of studying the impact of vertical diffusion on individual decision-making and of conceptualizing vertical diffusion as a process rather than as an outcome to be explained.

KW - electronic commerce

KW - federalism

KW - marketplace fairness

KW - policy diffusion

KW - policy process

KW - public policy

KW - sales and use tax

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84958050011&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84958050011&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1177/1532440015593811

DO - 10.1177/1532440015593811

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84958050011

VL - 16

SP - 22

EP - 43

JO - State Politics and Policy Quarterly

JF - State Politics and Policy Quarterly

SN - 1532-4400

IS - 1

ER -