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Facts Forum News, Vol. 5, No. 9, September 1956
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Facts Forum. Facts Forum News, Vol. 5, No. 9, September 1956 - File 020. 1956-09. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. May 22, 2019. https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/1352973/item/279/show/229.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Facts Forum. (1956-09). Facts Forum News, Vol. 5, No. 9, September 1956 - File 020. Facts Forum News, 1955-1956. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/1352973/item/279/show/229

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Facts Forum, Facts Forum News, Vol. 5, No. 9, September 1956 - File 020, 1956-09, Facts Forum News, 1955-1956, University of Houston Libraries, accessed May 22, 2019, https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/1352973/item/279/show/229.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Facts Forum News, Vol. 5, No. 9, September 1956
Series Title Facts Forum News
Creator
  • Facts Forum
Publisher Facts Forum
Date September 1956
Language eng
Subject
  • Anti-communist movements
  • Conservatism
  • Politics and government
  • Hunt, H. L.
Place
  • Dallas, Texas
Genre
  • journals (periodicals)
Type
  • Text
Identifier AP2.F146 v. 5 1956; OCLC: 1352973
Collection
  • University of Houston Libraries
  • Facts Forum News
Rights No Copyright - United States: This item is in the public domain in the United States and may be used freely in the United States. The item may not be in the public domain under the copyright laws of other countries.
Item Description
Title File 020
Transcript *" The Supreme Court Under Fire Hifjh-level criticisms of recent Supreme Court decisions have helped foment nationwide protests from those who are zealous in their defense of states' ri-rhts. Facts Forum News, presenting the customary pro and con sides of this controversial issue, feels that the case for the Supreme Court can best be argued by publishing resumes of two of the Court's better-known decisions. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Steve Nelson SUMMARY: In this case the question was whether the federal Smith Act, prohibiting the knowing advocacy of the overthrow of the United States government hy violence and force, superseded the Pennsylvania Sedition Act. The defendant, a member of tlie Communist Party, had been convicted in the Pennsylvania state courts. Chief Justice Warren's opinion held that Congress had occupied the field to the exclusion of parallel state legislation. The opinion of the Court, then, was that the dominant interest of the federal government precluded state intervention; moreover, administration of state acts would conflict with the operation of the federal plan. Justices Reed, Burton, and Minton dissented. They asserted that the Court should not void state legislation unless there was a clear mandate from Congress. Chief Justice Warren delivered the opinion of tbe Court. The respondent, Steve Nelson — an acknowledged member of the Communist Party, was convicted in the Pennsylvania court for violation of the Pennsylvania Sedition Act' and sentenced to imprisonment for twenty years and a fine of $10,000. The Superior Court affirmed the conviction. . . . The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, recognizing but not reaching many alleged serious trial errors and conduct of the trial court infringing upon respondent's right to due process of law, decided the case on the narrow issue of supercession of the state law by the federal Smith Act.- In its opinion, the Court stated: And, while the Pennsylvania statute proscribes sedition against either the government of the United States or the government of Pennsylvania, it is only alleged sedition against the United States with which the instant ease is concerned. Out of all the voluminous testimony we have not found, nor has anyone pointed to, a single word indicating a seditious act or even utterance directed against the government of Pennsylvania.1 The precise holding of the Court, and all that is before us for review, is that the Smith Act of 1940,4 as amended in 1948,"' which prohibits the knowing advocacy of the Page 18 overthrow of the government of the United States by ft* and violence, supersedes the enforceability of the Peni vania Sedition Act, which proscribes the same conduct- It should be said at the outset that the decision in t, case does not affect the right of states to enforce tW sedition laws at times when the federal government " not occupied the field and is not protecting the ontf* country from seditious conduct. . . . Nor does it limit ™ jurisdiction of the states where the Constitution and Co gress have specifically given them concurrent jurisdicti** as was done under the Eighteenth Amendment and ™ Volstead Act. . . . Nor does it limit the right of the ■*, to protect itself at any time against sabotage or artempi violence of all kinds." Nor does it prevent the state **1 prosecuting where the same act constitutes both a fefl^ offense and a state offense under the police power • • "J I Where, as in the instant case, Congress has not sta*? specifically whether a federal statute has occupied a ", in which the states arc otherwise free to legislate, differf criteria have furnished touchstones for decision. Thus: This Court, in considering the validity of state laws in tA light of . . . federal laws touching the same subject, has ma**6 use of the following expressions: conflicting: contrary to; occ» pying the field; repugnance; difference; irreconcilability; 'nC°j sistency; violation; curtailment; and interference. But none & these expressions provides an infallible constitutional test or -1 exclusive constitutional yardstick. Iu the final analysis there i'-11 be no one crystal-clear, distinctly-marked formula/ . . . Congress determined in 1940 that it was neceSW for it to re-enter the field of antisiibversive legisl*^ | which had been abandoned by it in 1921. In that yi'"r enacted the Smith Act. ... The Internal Security Act of 1950 is aimed more din'1 ■ at Communist organizations.8 It distinguishes bet* 'Pa Penal Coda Section 207, 18 Prml Pa Stat Ann Section 4207. ■377 I'll 58, 104 A2d 133. »377 Pa. at 69, 104 A2d. at 139. '54 Stat 670. ■18 USC Section 2385. -177 Pa, at 70. llll AM, at 139. .. 'Ilines v. Daviclowitz, .112 US 52, 67. 85 L cd 581, 586, 61 S Ct 39* »50 USC Section 781 i-l uq, Id.. Section 782 (3), (4). "'Id., Section 786. Facts Forum News, Sept , IS* evtember, x I Cornim °rganiz; N to I "■g com ""'(a,,: Nedlj honsp Nes" ; Povve,- r Sger Ks „ . ■"» ?*■ Int.- V me "OVisio Wee foul p Sdusi Napy >Congr: "■"■e th "ent it "■Sard], N law iti ,tS('" r. * a Seen S<1" Sow , y su, Strol , Eiifor Ser
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