Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.
Daniel Webster (17821852)
The power to tax is the power to destroy.
This quotation comes from the words of DANIEL WEBSTER and those of JOHN MARSHALL in the Supreme Court case, McCulloch v. Maryland.
Webster, in arguing the case, said: An unlimited power to tax involves, necessarily, a power to destroy, 17 U.S. 327 (1819).
In his decision, Chief Justice Marshall said: That the power of taxing it [the bank] by the States may be exercised so as to destroy it, is too obvious to be denied (p. 427), and That the power to tax involves the power to destroy [is] not to be denied (p. 431).