The Legal Tender cases

posted by
October 24, 2016
Future of Freedom Foundation
by David S D'Amato  
Posted in Commentary

"In the December term of 1870, the Supreme Court considered the constitutionality of a statute authorizing the issuance of U.S. notes (or 'greenbacks') and making those notes 'legal tender in payment of all debts, public and private.' That statute, the Legal Tender Act of 1862, was signed into law less than a year after the introduction of the nation's first federal income tax, a time of transformation during which the government of the United States seized an alarming host of new powers. ... The Court's opinion in the Legal Tender Cases foreshadows a willingness to yield to the accretion of power in the federal government; in the years to follow and throughout the next century, ever fewer fundamental rights, particularly economic rights, would rate serious judicial review, the judiciary increasingly acquiescing to government abuses of power." (10/21/16)  


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