WASHINGTON -- For the second time in two weeks, the Supreme Court has asked the solicitor general to spell out the views of the U.S. government in a case challenging the constitutionality of a state tax.

The court's request, which came yesterday in Itel Containers International Corp. v. Huddleston, appears to suggest the justices may be ready to grapple with the degree to which state taxes may impinge on foreign commerce.

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