Culloch v. State of Maryland

Decision Date01 February 1819
CourtU.S. Supreme Court

Webster, for the plaintiff in error,3 stated: 1. That the question whether congress constitutionally possesses the power to incorporate a bank, might be raised upon this record; and it was in the discretion of the defendant's counsel to agitate it. But it might have been hoped, that it was not now to be considered as an open question. It is a question of the utmost magnitude, deeply interesting to the government itself, as well as to individuals. The mere discussion of such a question may most essentially affect the value of a vast amount of private property. We are bound to suppose, that the defendant in error is well aware of these consequences, and would not have intimated an intention to agitate such a question, but with a real design to make it a topic of serious discussion, and with a view of demanding upon it the solemn judgment of this court. This question arose early after the adoption of the constitution, and was discussed and settled, so far as legislative decision could settle it, in the first congress. The arguments drawn from the constitution, in favor of this power, were stated and exhausted in that discussion. They were exhibited, with characteristic perspicuity and force, by the first secretary of the treasury, in his report to the president of the United States. The first congress created and incorporated a bank. Act of 5th February 1791, ch. 84. Nearly each succeeding congress, if not every one, has acted and legislated on the presumption of the legal existence of such a power in the government. Individuals, it is true, have doubted, or thought otherwise; but it cannot be shown, that either branch of the legislature has, at any time, expressed an opinion against the existence of the power. The executive government has acted upon it; and the courts of law have acted upon it. Many of those who doubted or denied the existence of the powers, when first attempted to be exercised, have yielded to the first decision, and acquiesced in it, as a settled question. When all branches of the government have thus been acting on...

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3195 cases
  • Larson v. Seattle Popular Monorail Auth.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Washington
    • March 30, 2006
    ...relevant. 1. In Washington, the people retain legislative powers. See WASH. CONST. art. II, § 1. 2. See McCulloch v. Maryland, 17 U.S. (4 Wheat.) 316, 428, 4 L.Ed. 579 (1819) ("The only security against the abuse of this power [of taxing the people and their property], is found in the struc......
  • Mannino, In re, Cr. 9005
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • February 1, 1971
    ...observed in exercising the Court's reviewing power over legislation, 'that it is A constitution we are expounding.' M'Culloch v. Maryland, 4 Wheat. 316, 407, 4 L.Ed. 579. I say the phrase is mischievous because it radiates a constitutional doctrine without avowing it. Clarity and candor in ......
  • Owino v. Corecivic, Inc., Case No.: 17-CV-1112 JLS (NLS)
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. United States District Court (Southern District of California)
    • May 14, 2018
    ...grants Congress broad power to enact federal legislation, United States v. Comstock, 560 U.S. 126, 133 (2010) (citing McCulloch v. Maryland, 4 Wheat. 316, 405 (1819)). Thus, even though the Constitution does not explicitly authorize federal crimes, the Necessary and Proper Clause allows Con......
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    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. Central District of California
    • June 23, 2003
    ...exercise of congressional authority. "Under our Constitution, the Federal Government is one of enumerated powers. McCulloch v. Maryland, 17 U.S. 316, 4 Wheat 316 (1819); see also The Federalist No. 45, p. 292 (C. Rossiter ed. 1961) (J. Madison). The judicial authority to determine the const......
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    • United States
    • The Georgetown Journal of Law & Public Policy No. 21-1, January 2023
    • January 1, 2023 I, § 8, cl. 18; Arthrex, 141 S. Ct. at 1988 (Breyer, J., concurring in part and dissenting in part). 87. McCulloch v. Maryland, 17 U.S. 316, 415 (1819). 88. See Lucia v. SEC, 138 S. Ct. 2044, 2062 (2018) (Breyer, J., dissenting) (“Congress, not the judicial branch alone, must play a ma......
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    • Missouri Law Review Vol. 85 No. 4, September 2020
    • September 22, 2020
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    • UCLA Journal of Environmental Law & Policy Vol. 39 No. 1, June 2021
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