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Commerce clause question sheet.docx

Commerce clause question sheet.docx - 1 What is the exact...

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1 What is the exact language of Article I, Section 8? Article I, Section 8, of the U.S. Constitution provides that Congress has the “Power to lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts, and Excises.” Section 8 further requires uniformity in taxation among the states, and thus Congress may not tax some states while exempting others. In the distant past, if Congress attempted to regulate indirectly, by taxation, an area over which it had no authority, the courts would invalidate the tax. Today, however, if a tax measure is reasonable, it generally is held to be within the national taxing power. Moreover, the expansive interpretation of the commerce clause almost always provides a basis for sustaining a federal tax. Article I, Section 8, also gives Congress its spending power—the power “to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States.” Congress can spend revenues not only to carry out its expressed powers but also to promote any objective it deems worthwhile, so long as it does not violate the Bill of Rights. The spending power necessarily involves policy choices, with which taxpayers (and politicians) may disagree. “[t]o regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes.” The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States; To borrow money on the credit of the United States; To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes; To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States; To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures;
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