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Harper v. Virginia State Board of Elections

United States Supreme Court
383 U.S. 663 (1966)


Facts

Section 173 of the Virginia Constitution directed the General Assembly to levy an annual poll tax not exceeding $1.50 on every resident of the state twenty-one years of age or older. Harper (plaintiff), a Virginia resident, brought suit against the Virginia State Board of Elections (defendant) in federal district court alleging that the Virginia poll tax violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The district court dismissed the complaint, and Harper appealed to the United States Supreme Court.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Douglas, J.)

The holding and reasoning section includes:

  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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Dissent (Harlan, J.)

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Dissent (Black, J.)

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