Is Capping the Deduction for State and Local Taxes Constitutional?


Erik M. Jensen


In the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, Congress capped the deduction available for state taxes not attributable to businesses or investments, and representatives of high-tax states are challenging the constitutionality of that cap—which, they argue, was motivated by animus. This article considers several possible rationales for a challenge—intergovernmental tax immunity, political animus in general, the uniformity rule, and equal protection—and concludes that the case for overturning the cap on constitutional grounds is weak at best.


cap on deduction for state and local taxes, animus, intergovernmental tax immunity, Uniformity Clause, equal protection

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Journal of Taxation of Investments, Spring 2018, at 27

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COinS Erik M. Jensen Faculty Bio