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Faculty Scholarship

Duke Law

2012

Tax Law

Constitution Welfare clause

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Not The Power To Destroy: An Effects Theory Of The Tax Power, Neil S. Siegel, Robert D. Cooter Jan 2012

Not The Power To Destroy: An Effects Theory Of The Tax Power, Neil S. Siegel, Robert D. Cooter

Faculty Scholarship

The Supreme Court’s “new federalism” decisions impose modest limits on the regulatory authority of Congress under the Commerce Clause. According to those decisions, the Commerce Clause empowers Congress to use penalties to regulate interstate commerce, but not to regulate noncommercial conduct. What prevents Congress from penalizing non-commercial conduct by calling a penalty a tax and invoking the Taxing Clause? The only obstacle is the distinction between a penalty and a tax for purposes of Article I, Section 8. In National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius (NFIB), the Court considered whether the minimum coverage provision in the Patient Protection ...