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Poll Tax Amendment Is Ratified


The 24th Amendment makes it illegal for states to charge a poll tax in order to vote in federal elections. The tax falls hardest on poor voters, black and white, but has been upheld by the courts because it does not discriminate by race. In Harper v. Virginia Board of Elections (1966), the U.S. Supreme Court extends the poll tax ban to state elections. The Court holds that discrimination based on economic status is in violation of the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment as well as the newly adopted 24th Amendment.