Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Supreme Court Anniversaries


2008 marks the anniversary of several important Supreme Court decisions.

100th anniversary:

Adair v. United States, 208 U.S. 161 (1908)(striking down ban on "yellow-dog" contracts that forbade workers from joining trade unions.)
Muller v. Oregon, 208 U.S. 412 (1908)(upholding woman protective labor legislation)
Ex parte Young, 209 U.S. 123 (1908)(creating legal fiction of suing state attorney general to permit suits against states and get around Hans v. Louisiana's interpretation of the Eleventh Amendment)
Londoner v. City and County of Denver, 210 U.S. 373 (1908)(administrative agencies must provide due process for adjudicative but not legislative actions)
Berea College v. Kentucky, 211 U.S. 45 (1908)(upholding Kentucky law that banned racial integration by private universities chartered as corporations)
Twining v. New Jersey, 211 U.S. 78 (1908)(key case in debate over incorporation of the Bill of Rights, declining to incorporate Fifth Amendment's ban on compelled self-incrimination)
Bailey v. Alabama, 211 U.S. 452 (1908)(striking down peonage laws under the Thirteenth Amendment)[UPDATE: Actually the decision striking down the peonage laws is the second Bailey case, 219 U.S. 219 (1911), see Raphael's note below]

50th anniversary:

Trop v. Dulles, 356 U.S. 86 (1958)(cruel and unusual punishment to strip citizenship as punishment; origin of "evolving standards of decency" test in Eighth Amendment jurisprudence)
Kent v. Dulles, 357 U.S. 116 (1958)(recognizing right to travel under the Fifth Amendment)
NAACP v. Alabama, 357 U.S. 449 (1958)(protecting freedom of association of NAACP from compelled disclosure of membership lists)
Speiser v. Randall, 357 U.S. 513 (1958)(striking down requirement of loyalty oath in order to obtain tax benefits)
Cooper v. Aaron, 358 U.S. 1 (1958)(holding that state school boards resisting integration orders were bound by the Supreme Court's interpretation of the Constitution).

35th anniversary:

San Antonio Independent School Dist. v. Rodriguez 411 U.S. 1 (1973)(holding that education is not a fundamental right and poverty is not a suspect classification)
Frontiero v. Richardson 411 U.S. 677 (1973)(applying heightened scrutiny to classifications based on sex)
Miller v. California 413 U.S. 15 (1973)(developing three part test for obscenity)
Roe v. Wade 410 U.S. 113 (1973)(upholding right to abortion)
Doe v. Bolton 410 U.S. 179 (1973)(upholding right to abortion)

25th anniversary:

Bob Jones University v. United States 461 U.S. 574 (1983)(upholding loss of tax exempt status to private religious school that discriminated on the basis of race)
City of Akron v. Akron Center for Reproductive Health 462 U.S. 416 (1983)(striking down various Ohio restrictions on abortion; in dissent, Justice O'Connor first offers "undue burden" test)
INS v. Chadha 462 U.S. 919 (1983)(holding legislative veto unconstitutional)
Marsh v. Chambers 463 U.S. 783 (1983)(permitting state legislatures to employ chaplains for prayers)

20th anniversary:

Hazelwood v. Kuhlmeier 484 U.S. 260 (1988)(limiting student speech in school sponsored activities)
Hustler Magazine v. Falwell 485 U.S. 46 (1988)(First Amendment prohibits public figures from using intentional infliction of emotional distress as an alternative to defamation claims)
Lying v. Northwest Indian CPA 485 U.S. 439 (1988)(Free Exercise Clause did not prevent logging on Native Americans sacred land)
Morrison v. Olson 487 U.S. 654 (1988)(upholding constitutionality of independent counsel statute)
Thompson v. Oklahoma 487 U.S. 815 (1988)(holding execution of persons who committed crimes while under the age of 16 violated the Eight Amendment)


Regarding your inclusion of Bailey v. Alabama (211 U.S. 452 (1908)), I don't think that's the Bailey you meant to include. In the 1908 case, the court denied Bailey's petition for a writ of error, because, according to Justice Holmes, Bailey's pre-trial habeas petition was a procedural "short-cut" which deprived the court of a developed factual record upon which to examine the constitutionality of the Alabama statute under which Bailey had been charged. "The trouble in dealing with this contention is due to the meager facts on which this case comes before us at this stage. ... We repeat, the trouble with the whole case is that it is brought here prematurely by an attempt to take a short-cut. And, as the supreme court of the state would have been warranted in denying the writ on that ground, perhaps we have done a work of supererogation in giving further reasons for affirming its judgment." Justice Harlan argued in dissent that the statute's constitutionality was properly before the court, and that the Court should have resolved the matter.

In 1911's Bailey v. Alabama, 219 U.S. 219, the Court considered Bailey's conviction under the Alabama statute. Deciding that the statute violated the Thirteenth Amendment and an act of Congress enforcing the amendment, the Court overturned Bailey’s conviction.

As Chief Justice Hughes’ majority opinion in the 1911 case noted during its recitation of the case’s procedural history, "Bailey, the plaintiff in error, was committed for detention on the charge of obtaining fifteen dollars under a contract in writing with intent to injure or defraud his employer. He sued out a writ of habeas corpus challenging the validity of the statute. His discharge was refused, and the supreme court of the state affirmed the order, holding the statute to be constitutional. 158 Ala. 18. On writ of error from this Court, it was held that the case was brought here prematurely, and the questions now presented were expressly reserved. Bailey v. Alabama, 211 U. S. 452."

So here's to 2011, when we can celebrate the later Bailey's 100th anniversary.

Yes you are right, and I've made the correction above.

Wasn't that *Lyng* v NW Indians, not "Lying"?!

When you wrote…
Roe v. Wade 410 U.S. 113 (1973)(upholding right to abortion)
Doe v. Bolton 410 U.S. 179 (1973)(upholding right to abortion)

You meant to say “(establishing the right to abortion)”.


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