The Washington State Supreme Court has a long history – like most courts – of following rulings by their predecessors. The adherence to precedent provides stability and predictability in our judicial system.
The more recent history of the court is a more political one, ranging from holding the Legislature in contempt for not following its orders in the public schools’ financing case known as the McCleary decision to its plagiarized opinion declaring charter schools unconstitutional last year.
Court watchers – including former justices – have lamented the lack of diversity of thought on the very liberal current court.
Now comes a very timely reminder from the Washington Policy Center (via the Tax Foundation) of the Supreme Court’s long history of opposition to a state income tax, having declared on this date in 1933 that it was unconstitutional under the state’s “provision requiring uniformity in taxing property.”
So, while we watch to see the court’s next steps on the McCleary decision after yet another hearing yesterday, we can at least celebrate the 83rd anniversary of our court declaring a state income tax unconstitutional.