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Retail groups say their campaign for an online sales tax bill is gaining momentum and now say it’s a question of when, not if, such a measure is enacted.

The National Retail Federation (NRF) and the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) say last week’s push for a sales-tax bill in the Senate, though unsuccessful, shows that the idea is gaining traction. The groups say the growing pressure from governors across the country is having an impact and express confidence that a bill will eventually pass Congress.

But with legislating expected to be all but at a standstill between now and November’s election, retailers aren’t predicting a measure will reach President Obama’s desk this year.

“Nobody’s expecting a lot because not a lot’s moving through the process,” said Jason Brewer, a RILA spokesman. “There’s very few [legislative] vehicles out there.”

But anti-tax groups that oppose the measure say one vehicle is all retailers would need to make their plan a reality, and are worried about the legislative deal-making likely to come at the end of the year.

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