Terms in this set (707)

While a state or local tax that discriminates against interstate commerce generally violates the Commerce Clause, the Clause is not always the strongest argument against the tax.

Interstate Privileges and Immunities Clause: If a state or local tax discriminates against a natural person who is a nonresident, the Article IV Interstate P&I Clause is the strongest argument against the tax's validity because it is more direct that a Commerce Clause argument.

Equal Protection:
Where Congress Approves the Discrimination: Although the SC normally uses the Commerce Clause to invalidate discriminatory legislation, it may also find that such discrimination violates the Equal Protection Clause. This is important where Congress has given the states the power to do something that would otherwise violate the Commerce Clause: Congress can give states the power to take actions that would otherwise violate equal protection. Thus, if Congress has approved a type of state tax that discriminates against out-of-state businesses, that state tax will not violate the Commerce Clause, but it might violate equal protection.

The Court may use equal protection analysis rather than Commerce Clause analysis to strike state taxes that are imposed on the basis of a suspect classification or that burden of a fundamental right. A state tax system giving tax exemptions only to long-time residents of the state and denying a similar tax exemption to newer residents will be held to violate the Equal Protection Clause.