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SWISS OIL CORP. V. SHANKS, 273 U. S. 407 (1927)

U.S. Supreme Court

Swiss Oil Corp. v. Shanks, 273 U.S. 407 (1927)

Swiss Oil Corporation v. Shanks

No. 148

Argued January 21, 1927

Decided February 21, 1927

273 U.S. 407


1. Upon review of a decision of a state court construing the state law as denying the relief sought by the appealing party even if the particular state statute attacked by him were assumed to be invalid, the constitutionality of that statute is not involved in this Court. P. 273 U. S. 411.

Page 273 U. S. 408

2. A state tax, called a "license" or "franchise" tax, measured by 1% of the market value of the annual production and imposed, in addition to general ad valorem property taxes, on producers of petroleum only, is not in violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, even if itself a property tax, since a separate classification of petroleum producers for tax purposes is not palpably arbitrary or unreasonable. P. 273 U. S. 412.

3. The Fourteenth Amendment does not require uniformity in taxation or forbid double taxation. P. 273 U. S. 413.

208 Ky. 64 affirmed.

Error to a judgment of the Court of Appeals of Kentucky which reversed a judgment in mandamus commanding Shanks, as Auditor of Public Accounts, to issue a warrant for a refund of taxes to the plaintiff oil company.

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