Bill would exempt firearms and ammunition from Michigan sales tax

An Upper Peninsula lawmaker believes Michigan residents shouldn't have to pay the 6 percent state sales tax on firearms or ammunition. (MGN)
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LANSING (WJRT) (8/29/2019) - An Upper Peninsula lawmaker believes Michigan residents shouldn't have to pay sales tax to exercise their Second Amendment rights to bear arms.

State Rep. Beau LaFave, a Republican of Iron Mountain, introduced legislation on Thursday that would exempt firearms and ammunition from the 6 percent state sales tax.

He pointed out no other rights enshrined in the Constitution are subject to taxation.

“The state doesn’t tax our right to free speech. It doesn’t tax our right to vote. It doesn’t tax our right to seek counsel in trial,” LaFave said. “So why on earth is the state allowed to make a direct commission off our right to bear arms?"

He believes taxation on guns and ammunition makes the Second Amendment right to bear arms less of a legal right.

“The current sales and use tax on Michiganders’ right to bear arms is the state government failing to recognize it as a legal right,” LaFave said.

He is concerned the sales tax makes guns and ammunition too expensive for some low-income Michigan residents, taking away their fundamental right to bear arms.

LaFave's legislation has been referred to the House Tax Policy Committee for consideration. It would have to pass there, the full House and full Senate before Gov. Gretchen Whitmer could sign it into law.