The Elephant and the Four Blind Men: The Burger Court and Its Federal Tax Decisions
Moran, Beverly I.
Schneider, Daniel M.
All the federal tax decisions of the Burger Court are reviewed in order to demonstrate that widely held beliefs about statutory interpretation in tax cases are misleading. For example, although the literature asserts that courts do not distinguish between legislative and interpretive regulations, the Burger Court did give greater deference to legislative regulations. Further, despite some Justices antipathy to legislative history, the Burger Court relied heavily on legislative histories in making its decisions. In addition, the widely held view that the Court eschews tax controversies was found false when compared to other business areas.