SCOTUS decisions that diminished States Rights.

jgoodguy

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These stand out as SCOTUS decisions that diminished states rights.
 

5fish

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These stand out as SCOTUS decisions that diminished states rights.
You should list the cases the SCOTUS protected and advance slavery in our nation because Slavery in a State Rights issue...
 

jgoodguy

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You should list the cases the SCOTUS protected and advance slavery in our nation because Slavery in a State Rights issue...
When slavery protection was an issue, it was framed as federal preemption. Prigg v Pennsylvania and Ableman v Booth are examples.
 

5fish

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They were about state overreaching their authority... or state rights?

https://www.oyez.org/cases/1789-1850/41us539

Facts of the case

The Pennsylvania legislature passed laws in 1788 and 1826 prohibiting the removal of Negroes out of the state for the purpose of enslaving them. In 1832, a black woman named Margaret Morgan moved from Maryland to Pennsylvania. Although she was never formally emancipated, her owner John Ashmore granted her virtually full freedom. Ashmore's heirs wanted her returned as a slave and sent Edward Prigg to capture her in Pennsylvania. After returning Morgan to Maryland, Prigg was convicted in a Pennsylvania court for violating the 1826 law. Prigg unsuccessfully argued before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court that both the 1788 and 1826 laws violated the constitutional guarantee of extradition among states and the federal government's Fugitive Slave Law of 1793.

Question
Did Pennsylvania's law prohibiting the extradition of Negroes to other states for the purpose of slavery violate Article IV, Section 2 of the Constitution? Did the law violate the Fugitive Slave Law of 1793 as applied by the Supremacy Clause?

Conclusion
Yes and yes. Justice Joseph Story delivered the opinion of the Court. The 1788 and 1826 Pennsylvania laws contradicted Article IV, Section 2 of the Constitution and the Fugitive Slave Law. The Supremacy Clause assured that federal laws prevailed over the state laws. The decision did not wholly end asylum across state lines for slaves. Story granted that the state laws put in place by slave states to recapture slaves in free states only had to be enforced by federal officials, and not state magistrates.


https://www.oyez.org/cases/1850-1900/62us506

Facts of the case

Sherman Booth petitioned a local court judge for the release of Joshua Glover, a runaway slave held in federal custody in Wisconsin. Though the federal authorities did not accept the judge's order, a mob eventually freed Glover. Booth was charged with aiding the escape of a runaway slave in violation of the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850. Via a writ of habeas corpus, Booth successfully petitioned the Supreme Court of Wisconsin for his release. Booth was then convicted in the United States District Court for the District of Wisconsin and detained again. Booth again petitioned the Supreme Court of Wisconsin for his release, alleging that the Fugitive Slave Act was unconstitutional and that the Federal District Court lacked jurisdiction. Booth was again released by the Wisconsin Supreme Court. The United States appealed to the Supreme Court.

Question
Did the Supreme Court of Wisconsin have the authority to issue the writs of habeas corpus that released Booth?

Conclusion
In a unanimous decision, the Court reversed the Supreme Court of Wisconsin. In an opinion authored by Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, the Court asserted the supremacy of federal courts on issues of federal law. The Court dismissed Wisconsin's claim of judicial power, since "it certainly has not been conferred on them by the United States; and it is equally clear it was not in the power of the State to confer it." While Wisconsin courts had authority to issue writs of habeas corpus to cases where the prisoner was held by the state, the Court explained, this authority did not extend to prisoners held by the federal government.
 

5fish

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How does this case fit in:

American Insurance Company v. 356 Bales of Cotton, 26 U.S. (1 Pet.) 511 (1828), was a case decided by the Supreme Court of the United States. The case involved the validity of a local court established by Congress in the Florida Territory whose judges lacked life tenure, as mandated by Article III of the Constitution. Chief Justice John Marshall upheld the courts on the basis of Congress's broad power to enact local laws for territories under Article IV, Section 3, Clause 2 of the Constitution.[1] The case was later discussed in Dred Scott v. Sandford, where Chief Justice Roger Taney distinguished it in holding that Congress could not ban slavery within a territory.
 

5fish

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I found this to explain how American Insurance Company v. 356 Bales of Cotton, and Dred Scott case are related... the paragraph of the page...

 

IcarusPhoenix

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I mean, Dred Scott v. Sanford itself comes readily to mind as fitting the parameters of the original post. The majority opinion literally stated that states that outlawed slavery were obligated to enforce the laws of other states within their own borders and ignore their own in regards to the freedom of an entire race of people.
 

jgoodguy

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I mean, Dred Scott v. Sanford itself comes readily to mind as fitting the parameters of the original post. The majority opinion literally stated that states that outlawed slavery were obligated to enforce the laws of other states within their own borders and ignore their own in regards to the freedom of an entire race of people.
To my knowledge, Dred Scott was only enforced one time. The Lincoln admin refused to enforce it, ignored it and the 13th amendment destroyed the slave related parts of it. Lemmon v. New York in theory would have destroyed the States Rights of Free States, putting the lie to the idea that the Civil War was over States Rights, but the Civil War intervened. The 1850 Fugitive Slave Act also violated the States Rights of Free States. When slavery was at risk, the political power of the Slave States dictated what States Rights for Free States and when that political power was insufficient, they simply succeeded.
 

byron ed

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I mean, Dred Scott v. Sanford itself comes readily to mind as fitting the parameters of the original post. The majority opinion literally stated that states that outlawed slavery were obligated to enforce the laws of other states within their own borders and ignore their own in regards to the freedom of an entire race of people...
Well, no. The only thing enforceable in Scott v. Sanford was that Dred Scott could not file a lawsuit because he was not a legal citizen. That was the only ruling in the case. Folks confuse that with the case written opinion -- which was optional and not part of the ruling itself. The opinion was not yet U.S. law and was not enforceable as yet. In other words the ruling did not literally require "that states that outlawed slavery were obligated to enforce the laws of other states within their own borders and ignore their own in regards to the freedom of an entire race of people."

What Scott v. Sanford did do was to establish a precedent, which was bad enough. By precedent, going forward, any black person was not a citizen so none could not bring suit against their owner in court. The obvious follow-on case, which would be pushed-for, would be to establish that broader definition. That in turn would eventually result in the practical likelihood that slavery would again be legally re-introduced all the free Northern states, especially as supported elsewhere in the Scott v Sanford opinion that the declaration that the Northwest Territory was created slave-free had been unconstitutional. (Any retroactive re-direct about the Northwest Territory would also then apply to any state made from that former territory).

Again; as far as Scott v Sanford, it was the precedent set by the case (via the written opinion) that was significant and feared, not the ruling itself, because the ruling itself, the enforceable law of it, only applied to one man so far: Scott).
 
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jgoodguy

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Well, no. The only thing enforceable in Scott v. Sanford was that Dred Scott could not file a lawsuit because he was not a legal citizen. That was the only ruling in the case. Folks confuse that with the case written opinion -- which was optional and not part of the ruling itself. The opinion was not yet U.S. law and was not enforceable as yet. In other words the ruling did not literally require "that states that outlawed slavery were obligated to enforce the laws of other states within their own borders and ignore their own in regards to the freedom of an entire race of people."

What Scott v. Sanford did do was to establish a precedent, which was bad enough. By precedent, going forward, any black person was not a citizen so none could not bring suit against their owner in court. The obvious follow-on case, which would be pushed-for, would be to establish that broader definition. That in turn would eventually result in the practical likelihood that slavery would again be legally re-introduced all the free Northern states, especially as supported elsewhere in the Scott v Sanford opinion that the declaration that the Northwest Territory was created slave-free had been unconstitutional. (Any retroactive re-direct about the Northwest Territory would also then apply to any state made from that former territory).

Again; as far as Scott v Sanford, it was the precedent set by the case (via the written opinion) that was significant and feared, not the ruling itself, because the ruling itself, the enforceable law of it, only applied to one man so far: Scott).
Very good points.

Subsequent SCOTUS decisions or enforcement by presidents with Southern bias might have made it more, but that did not happen. There was a follow on decision, Lemmon v. New York - Wikipedia, which could have eliminated the State Right to ban slavery. There is a lot of speculation that it would have been a follow on to Dred Scott. I don't know because the reaction to the 1850 fugitive slave act was so violent, I don't know if such a decision could have been enforced.

I don't know what Taney was smoking when he tackled the citizenship issue, because antebellum citizenship was determined at the State level and different States had different standards of who was black. A federal case between a free State that had one standard of citizenship and blackness vs a slave State with another would be very interesting.
 

Jim Klag

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Well, no. The only thing enforceable in Scott v. Sanford was that Dred Scott could not file a lawsuit because he was not a legal citizen. That was the only ruling in the case. Folks confuse that with the case written opinion -- which was optional and not part of the ruling itself. The opinion was not yet U.S. law and was not enforceable as yet. In other words the ruling did not literally require "that states that outlawed slavery were obligated to enforce the laws of other states within their own borders and ignore their own in regards to the freedom of an entire race of people."

What Scott v. Sanford did do was to establish a precedent, which was bad enough. By precedent, going forward, any black person was not a citizen so none could not bring suit against their owner in court. The obvious follow-on case, which would be pushed-for, would be to establish that broader definition. That in turn would eventually result in the practical likelihood that slavery would again be legally re-introduced all the free Northern states, especially as supported elsewhere in the Scott v Sanford opinion that the declaration that the Northwest Territory was created slave-free had been unconstitutional. (Any retroactive re-direct about the Northwest Territory would also then apply to any state made from that former territory).

Again; as far as Scott v Sanford, it was the precedent set by the case (via the written opinion) that was significant and feared, not the ruling itself, because the ruling itself, the enforceable law of it, only applied to one man so far: Scott).
Correct. In and of themselves, court rulings are not law. They require accompanying legislation to give them the force of law. An example is Andy Jackson thumbing his nose at John Marshall over his ruling in the matter of Cherokee removal. I'm not sure old Andy would have complied even if Congress did provide tha law. State laws requiring police to read suspects their rights followed up the Miranda decision. That's why every one of those little speeches is slightly different. The only universal requirements are telling of the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. The precise wording is up to the states.
 
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