On Friday, the Supreme Court heard arguments in a case brought by the Justice Department, which argues that California’s state sales tax on footwear and other merchandise is unconstitutional.
In its opinion, the court noted that shoes are a “necessary and desirable means of self-protection” and that the state’s law “does not discriminate against any class of persons.”
This is the first time in U.S. history that the Supreme is considering the constitutionality of a state sales-tax measure.
The case, Shoes and Equipment Co. v.
Sales Tax Board, is currently before the court for oral arguments.
A majority of justices on the court said Friday that the government can’t claim that a shoe tax is “discriminatory” against people based on race or gender.
The justices said that the tax, which is one of a dozen such measures in the country, was enacted to protect consumers from higher prices.
The Supreme Court also said that a similar tax in Massachusetts, which has been in place since at least 2002, has been shown to be an effective way to increase revenue.
While the court agreed with the Justice Dept. that the taxation is a violation of the Constitution, the justices also said the state must prove that the burden of compliance on businesses is greater than that on individuals.
In addition to the high court, the majority also sided with the government on the question of whether the tax was “reasonably necessary” to promote the economic interests of businesses.
The government has argued that the sales tax is necessary because the state has to tax the products in the state, and that companies that move to the state have an incentive to avoid the tax.
The court, however, said that it is not necessary to tax footwear and apparel to ensure that “everywhere” has access to affordable shoes and other clothing.
“A tax is not a tax because it does not discriminate on the basis of race or sex,” Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote for the court.
“The state’s interest in making a profit is not sufficient to justify a tax on all footwear and clothing.”
The state argued that this tax is in the “national interest” and “an efficient means of ensuring that a certain number of products are available in a given market, in accordance with state standards.”
The court did not address the argument that the federal government is likely to challenge the constitution validity of the tax in the courts.
The ruling is likely the first in a series of court cases that will test whether the federal tax is unconstitutional, given the fact that it was enacted before the Supreme court’s Citizens United decision in 2015.
The Justice Dept., which represents California, argued that it did not need to appeal the case because the federal court found the state tax to be unconstitutional.
California’s tax on the sale of footwear and similar items was originally enacted in 2010.
Under the measure, people who own the products must pay an excise tax on them, but it is unclear how much the state imposes on each sale.
The state has argued in court filings that the measure was necessary because of the economic benefits that came from it, including increased revenue for local governments.
The U.K. also recently upheld a similar state sales taxes.
The tax has been used by businesses to offset costs of moving their businesses to the country from countries that have imposed high tariffs on products.