The Sixteenth Amendment, which allows the federal government to directly tax citizens' incomes, was ratified in 1913. That seems to be the same period of time (late 19th and early 20th centuries) that Georgism, a.k.a. the Single Tax Movement, which advocated for replacing all taxes with a tax on the economic rent of land, was most popular. A political party based on Georgism (the Single Tax Party) was founded during the period of the amendment's ratification.

For the purposes of this question, here are the kinds of facts I'm most interested in:

  • Did Georgists influence the drafting of the Sixteenth Amendment?
  • Did prominent Georgists take a stance (pro or con) on the passage of the Sixteenth Amendment?
  • To what extent (if at all) did the Sixteenth Amendment's ratification contribute to an increase or decrease of Georgist sentiment in the United States?
  • 1
    I was skeptical, but looking into it, it does appear that the 16th is purposely worded to make land income taxable as well as labor income. The timing works out pretty well too, because the direct precipitating event was a SCOTUS ruling in 1895. At that time George himself was still alive and running for office.
    – T.E.D.
    Jun 6, 2022 at 22:04


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