, Guinn & Beal v. United States :: 238 U.S. 347 (1915) :: US LAW US Supreme Court Center

Guinn & Beal v. United States :: 238 U.S. 347 (1915) :: US LAW US Supreme Court Center

    U.S. Supreme Court

    Guinn & Beal v. United States, 238 U.S. 347 (1915)

    Guinn & Beal v. United States

    No. ninety six

    Argued October 17, 1913

    Decided June 21, 1915

    238 U.S. 347

    Syllabus

    The so-referred to as Grandfather Clause of the modification to the charter of Oklahoma of 1910 is void as it violates the Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the US.

    The Grandfather Clause being unconstitutional, and no longer being separable from the remainder of the modification to the constitution of Oklahoma of 1910, that amendment as a whole is invalid.

    The Fifteenth Amendment does now not, in a fashionable sense, take from the States the electricity over suffrage possessed by using the States from the beginning, but it does limit the power of the United States or the States to abridge or deny the proper of a citizen of the US to vote attributable to race, coloration or previous condition of servitude. While the Fifteenth Amendment offers no right of suffrage, as its command is self-executing, rights of suffrage may be enjoyed by using reason of the striking out of discriminations against the exercising of the right.

    A provision in a state charter routine to situations current before the adoption of the Fifteenth Amendment and the continuance of which conditions that modification prohibited, and making those

    Page 238 U. S. 348

    situations the take a look at of the proper to the suffrage, is in battle with, and void under, the Fifteenth Amendment.

    The establishment of a literacy check for exercise the suffrage is an exercising by means of the State of a lawful electricity vested in it not situation to the supervision of the Federal courts.

    Whether a provision in a suffrage statute may be legitimate beneath the Federal Constitution if it is so connected with other provisions that are invalid as to make the complete statute unconstitutional is a question of nation law, but, in the absence of any choice by the country court, this court docket may, in a case coming from the Federal courts, determine it for itself.

    The suffrage and literacy tests in the amendment of 1910 to the constitution of Oklahoma are so linked with every other that the unconstitutionality of the former renders the complete amendment invalid.

    The information, which contain the constitutionality underneath the Fifteenth Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of the suffrage change to the constitution of Oklahoma, referred to as the Grandfather Clause, and the responsibility of election officials underneath § 5508, Rev.Stat., and § 19 of the Penal Code for preventing humans from vote casting who have the proper to vote, are said in the opinion.

    Page 238 U. S. 354

    U.S. Supreme Court

    Guinn & Beal v. United States, 238 U.S. 347 (1915)

    Guinn & Beal v. United States

    No. 96

    Argued October 17, 1913

    Decided June 21, 1915

    238 U.S. 347

    CERTIFICATE FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF APPEALS

    FOR THE EIGHTH CIRCUIT

    Syllabus

    The so-referred to as Grandfather Clause of the change to the charter of Oklahoma of 1910 is void as it violates the Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the US.

    The Grandfather Clause being unconstitutional, and not being separable from the remainder of the amendment to the constitution of Oklahoma of 1910, that amendment as a whole is invalid.

    The Fifteenth Amendment does not, in a trendy feel, take from the States the power over suffrage possessed via the States from the start, but it does restriction the strength of america or the States to abridge or deny the proper of a citizen of america to vote as a consequence of race, coloration or previous condition of servitude. While the Fifteenth Amendment gives no proper of suffrage, as its command is self-executing, rights of suffrage may be enjoyed via cause of the striking out of discriminations towards the exercise of the proper.

    A provision in a state charter recurring to conditions present before the adoption of the Fifteenth Amendment and the continuance of which situations that change prohibited, and making those

    Page 238 U. S. 348

    situations the check of the proper to the suffrage, is in struggle with, and void underneath, the Fifteenth Amendment.

    The establishment of a literacy test for exercising the suffrage is an exercising by using the State of a lawful power vested in it not difficulty to the supervision of the Federal courts.

    Whether a provision in a suffrage statute may be legitimate under the Federal Constitution if it is so connected with different provisions which are invalid as to make the whole statute unconstitutional is a query of kingdom law, but, in the absence of any selection by using the state court, this court docket can also, in a case coming from the Federal courts, determine it for itself.

    The suffrage and literacy assessments within the amendment of 1910 to the charter of Oklahoma are so connected with every other that the unconstitutionality of the previous renders the complete amendment invalid.

    The information, which contain the constitutionality underneath the Fifteenth Amendment of the Constitution of america of the suffrage change to the charter of Oklahoma, referred to as the Grandfather Clause, and the obligation of election officers under § 5508, Rev.Stat., and § 19 of the Penal Code for stopping humans from balloting who've the proper to vote, are stated in the opinion.

    Page 238 U. S. 354

    MR. CHIEF JUSTICE WHITE introduced the opinion of the court docket.

    This case is earlier than us on a certificates drawn by using the courtroom below as the premise of questions which can be submitted for our solution as a way to enable the court efficiently to decide troubles in a case which it has under attention. Those troubles arose from an indictment and conviction of sure election officers of the State of Oklahoma (the plaintiffs in error) of the crime of having conspired unlawfully, willfully and fraudulently to deprive certain negro residents, resulting from their race and color, of a right to vote at a popular election held in that State in 1910, they being entitled to vote under the nation law and which right was secured to them with the aid of the Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. The prosecution changed into without delay concerned with § 5508, Rev.Stat., now § 19 of the Penal Code that is as follows:

    "If or more persons conspire to injure, oppress, threaten, or intimidate any citizen in the unfastened exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him with the aid of the Constitution or legal guidelines of the United States, or because of his having so exercised the equal, or if two or greater individuals cross in cover on the motorway, or at the premises of every other, with purpose to save you or avoid his unfastened workout or enjoyment of any proper or privilege so secured, they shall be fined not greater than five thousand bucks and imprisoned no longer greater than ten years, and shall, furthermore, be thereafter ineligible to any office or area of honor, earnings, or agree with created via the Constitution or legal guidelines of the US. "

    Page 238 U. S. 355

    We listen and state from the certificate simplest subjects which we deem critical to get rid of the questions requested.

    Suffrage in Oklahoma changed into regulated with the aid of § 1, Article III of the Constitution under which the State turned into admitted into the Union. Shortly after the admission, there was submitted an modification to the Constitution making a thorough alternate in that article which was followed previous to November 8, 1910. At an election for contributors of Congress which followed the adoption of this Amendment, certain election officers, in implementing its provisions, refused to permit sure negro residents to vote who have been definitely entitled to vote below the provision of the Constitution below which the State became admitted, that is, before the modification, and who, it's miles similarly clear, were no longer entitled to vote under the provision of the suffrage change if that change governed. The humans so excluded based totally their declare of right to vote upon the authentic Constitution and upon the announcement that the suffrage amendment become void due to the fact in war with the prohibitions of the Fifteenth Amendment, and consequently afforded no foundation for denying them the right guaranteed and guarded with the aid of that Amendment. And upon the idea that this claim was justified and that the election officers had violated the Fifteenth Amendment in denying the right to vote, this prosecution, as we have said, was started. At the trial, the court docket instructed that, through the Fifteenth Amendment, the States were prohibited from discriminating as to suffrage due to race, shade, or previous condition of servitude, and that Congress, in pursuance of the authority which was conferred upon it by way of the very terms of the Amendment to put in force its provisions, had enacted the following (Rev.Stat., § 2004):

    "All residents of america who are otherwise qualified with the aid of regulation to vote at any election via the human beings of any State, Territory, district, . . . municipality, . . . or

    Page 238 U. S. 356

    different territorial subdivision, shall be entitled and allowed to vote at all such elections, with out difference of race, color, or previous situation of servitude; any constitution, law, custom, usage, or law of any State or Territory, or via or under its authority to the opposite however."

    It then told as follows:

    "The State amendment which imposes the check of reading and writing any phase of the State charter as a condition to voting to folks no longer on or prior to January 1, 1866, entitled to vote underneath some form of government, or then resident in some overseas nation, or a lineal descendant of such character, isn't always valid, however you may remember it insofar as it become in desirable faith relied and acted upon through the defendants in ascertaining their purpose and purpose. If you agree with from the evidence that the defendants formed a common design and cooperated in denying the colored voters of Union Township precinct, or any of them, entitled to vote, the privilege of vote casting, but this became due to a improper belief without a doubt entertained with the aid of the defendants as to the qualifications of the citizens -- this is, if the cause actuating the defendants changed into honest, and they sincerely erred within the conception in their obligation -- then the crook purpose requisite to their guilt is trying, and they can not be convicted. On the other hand, if they knew or believed these coloured people were entitled to vote, and their cause become to unfairly and fraudulently deny the right of suffrage to them, or any of them entitled thereto, as a result of their race and coloration, then their cause became a corrupt one, and that they can't be shielded by using their official positions."

    The questions which the courtroom underneath asks are these:

    "1. Was the change to the constitution of Oklahoma, heretofore set forth, valid?"

    "2. Was that modification void insofar because it attempted to debar from the right or privilege of balloting for a certified

    Page 238 U. S. 357

    candidate for a has membership of Congress in Oklahoma, except they were capable of examine and write any section of the constitution of Oklahoma, negro citizens of the USA who had been in any other case certified to vote for a qualified candidate for a has membership of Congress in that State, but who have been now not, and none of whose lineal ancestors was entitled to vote under any form of government on January 1, 1866, or at any time prior thereto, because they were then slaves?"

    As these questions glaringly relate to the provisions concerning suffrage in the authentic constitution and the amendment to those provisions which paperwork the premise of he controversy, we kingdom the text of both. The original clause, up to now as fabric, become this:

    "The certified electors of the State will be male residents of the US, male citizens of the State, and male individuals of Indian descent native of the US, who're over the age of twenty-one years, who have resided inside the State 365 days, within the county six months, and in the election precinct thirty days, subsequent previous the election at which this type of elector offers to vote."

    And this is the amendment:

    "No person will be registered as an elector of this State or be allowed to vote in any election herein, until he be able to examine and write any segment of the constitution of the State of Oklahoma; but no character who become, on January 1, 1866, or at any time previous thereto, entitled to vote beneath any form of presidency, or who at that point resided in some foreign state, and no lineal descendant of such man or woman, will be denied the proper to register and vote because of his incapability to so study and write sections of such constitution. Precinct election inspectors having in rate the registration of electors shall put in force the provisions of this segment on the time of registration, furnished registration be required. Should registration be disbursed with, the provisions of this segment will be enforced through the

    Page 238 U. S. 358

    precinct election officer whilst electors apply for ballots to vote."

    Considering the questions within the proper of the textual content of the suffrage amendment, it's miles obvious that they're two-fold, due to the two-fold man or woman of the provisions as to suffrage which the change consists of. The first query is concerned with that provision of the change which fixes a preferred with the aid of which the proper to vote is given upon situations present on January 1, 1866, and relieves those coming inside that wellknown from the usual based totally on a literacy test that is set up through the opposite provision of the change. The 2nd query asks as to the validity of the literacy take a look at and the way some distance, if intrinsically legitimate, it might continue to exist and be operative within the event the same old primarily based upon January 1, 1866, need to be held to be unlawful as violative of the Fifteenth Amendment.

    To avoid that which makes no sense, allow us to without delay bear in mind and sift the propositions of america, on the one hand, and of the plaintiffs in errors, on the other, for you to reach with precision the actual and very last query to be considered. The United States insists that the provision of the change which fixes a widespread based totally upon January 1, 1866, is repugnant to the prohibitions of the Fifteenth Amendment due to the fact, in substance and impact, that provision, if no longer an explicit, is truely an open, repudiation of the Fifteenth Amendment, and consequently the availability in question changed into stricken with nullity in its inception through the self-operative force of the Amendment, and, as the result of the equal energy, changed into at all next instances without any energy something.

    For the plaintiffs in errors, however, it is said the States have the power to restore requirements for suffrage, and that energy become not taken away by the Fifteenth Amendment, but handiest restricted to the volume of the prohibitions which that Amendment mounted. This being true, because the

    Page 238 U. S. 359

    fashionable constant does now not in terms make any discrimination as a consequence of race, color, or previous situation of servitude, on the grounds that all, whether negro or white, who come within its requirements experience the privilege of vote casting, there is no ground upon which to relaxation the competition that the supply violates the Fifteenth Amendment. This, it's miles insisted, must be the case except it's miles meant to expressly deny the State s right to offer a widespread for suffrage, or, what is equivalent thereto, to assert: a, that the judgment of the State exercised inside the exertion of that power is problem to Federal judicial evaluate or supervision, or b, that it can be questioned and be delivered in the prohibitions of the Amendment by way of attributing to the legislative authority an occult purpose to violate the Amendment or by using assuming that an exercising of the otherwise lawful power can be invalidated because of conclusions regarding its operation in sensible execution and resulting discrimination arising therefrom, albeit such discrimination changed into now not expressed within the wellknown fixed or fairly to be implied, however honestly arose from inequalities naturally inhering in those who need to come in the standard in an effort to revel in the right to vote.

    On the alternative hand, the USA denies the relevancy of these contentions. It says nation strength to offer for suffrage isn't always disputed, although, of direction, the authority of the Fifteenth Amendment and the limit on that power which it imposes is insisted upon. Hence, no statement denying the proper of a State to exert judgment and reticence in solving the qualification of suffrage is superior, and no right to question the cause of the State in establishing a wellknown as to such topics beneath such situations or to study or supervise the identical is relied upon, and no power to smash an in any other case legitimate exertion of authority upon the mere closing operation of the power exercised is asserted. And, applying those principles to the very case in hand, the argument of the

    Page 238 U. S. 360

    Government, in substance, says: absolute confidence is raised by means of the Government concerning the validity of the literacy check supplied for in the change under consideration as an independent general, for the reason that conclusion is plain that that take a look at rests on the workout of country judgment, and therefore can not be right here assailed either by means of brushing off the State s power to judge on the difficulty or by using trying out its motive in enacting the supply. The actual question involved, so the argument of the Government insists, is the repugnancy of the usual which the amendment makes, primarily based upon the conditions current on January 1, 1866, due to the fact, on its face and inherently, thinking about the substance of factors, that widespread is a mere denial of the regulations imposed by way of the prohibitions of the Fifteenth Amendment, and by means of vital end result, recreates and perpetuates the very situations which the Amendment become intended to break. From this, it's miles advised that no valid discretion could have entered into the fixing of such preferred which worried simplest the determination to at once set at naught or with the aid of indirection avoid the commands of the Amendment. And it's miles insisted that not anything opposite to those propositions is concerned in the competition of the Government that, if the standard which the suffrage amendment fixes based totally upon the conditions current on January 1, 1866, be determined to be void for the motives entreated, the alternative and literacy check is also void, on the grounds that that rivalry rests not upon any statement at the a part of the Government of any summary repugnancy of the literacy test to the prohibitions of the Fifteenth Amendment, however upon the relation between that take a look at and the alternative as formulated within the suffrage change, and the inevitable end result which it's far deemed should follow from protecting it to be void if the alternative is so declared to be.

    Looking comprehensively at those contentions of the events, it it appears that evidently effects that the conflict between them is

    Page 238 U. S. 361

    tons narrower than it'd appear to be because the premise which the arguments of the plaintiffs in blunders characteristic to the propositions of america is through it denied. On the very face of things, it's miles clean that the United States disclaims the gloss placed upon its contentions by means of proscribing them to the propositions which we've got hitherto talked about, because it rests the contentions which it makes as to the assailed provision of the suffrage modification solely upon the ground that it involves an unmistakable, although it could be a quite disguised, refusal to offer effect to the prohibitions of the Fifteenth Amendment by growing a preferred which it is repeated, but calls to life the very conditions which that Amendment turned into adopted to smash and which it had destroyed.

    The questions then are: (1) giving to the propositions of the Government the interpretation which the Government places upon them and assuming that the suffrage provision has the significance which the Government assumes it to have, is that provision, as a be counted of regulation, repugnant to the Fifteenth Amendment? which leads us, of course, to don't forget the operation and effect of the Fifteenth Amendment. (2) If yes, has the assailed amendment, insofar because it fixes a trendy for voting as of January 1, 1866, the that means which the Government attributes to it? which leads us to analyze and interpret that provision of the modification. (three) If the investigation as to the two previous subjects establishes that the standard fixed as of January 1, 1866, is void, what, if any, effect does that conclusion have upon the literacy popular otherwise installed with the aid of the modification? which involves figuring out whether that fashionable, if prison, may live on the popularity of the truth that the other or 1866 trendy has no longer, and never had, any prison existence. Let us remember those subjects under separate headings.

    1. The operation and impact of the Fifteenth Amendment. This is its text:

    Page 238 U. S. 362

    "Section 1. The right of citizens of america to vote shall not be denied or abridged with the aid of the United States or by means of any State due to race, shade, or preceding circumstance of servitude."

    "Section 2. The Congress shall have strength to put into effect this text through suitable legislation."

    (a) Beyond doubt, the Amendment does not put off from the kingdom governments in a standard feel the power over suffrage which has belonged to the ones governments from the beginning, and with out the possession of which energy the entire cloth upon which the department of kingdom and national authority below the Constitution and the business enterprise of both governments rest could be without help and each the authority of the kingdom and the State would fall to the floor. In truth, the very command of the Amendment acknowledges the ownership of the overall energy by means of the State, for the reason that Amendment seeks to alter its exercise as to the precise difficulty with which it offers.

    (b) But it's miles similarly past the opportunity of question that the Amendment, in explicit terms, restricts the strength of the USA or the States to abridge or deny the right of a citizen of the USA to vote resulting from race, coloration or preceding condition of servitude. The restrict is coincident with the strength, and prevents its exertion in disregard of the command of the Amendment

    But, whilst this is real, it is authentic also that the Amendment does no longer alternate, modify or deprive the States in their full electricity as to suffrage besides, of direction, as to the concern with which the Amendment offers and to the quantity that obedience to its command is vital. Thus, the authority over suffrage which the States own and the quandary which the Amendment imposes are coordinate, and one may not damage the alternative without bringing about the destruction of each.

    (c) While, in the authentic sense, consequently, the Amendment

    Page 238 U. S. 363

    gives no right of suffrage, it changed into long in the past identified that, in operation, its prohibition may measurably have that effect; this is to mention, that, because the command of the Amendment become self-executing and reached with out legislative action the conditions of discrimination against which it turned into aimed, the end result might get up that attributable to the hanging down of a discriminating clause a proper of suffrage might be loved by reason of the prevalent individual of the supply which would continue to be after the discrimination become stricken out. Ex parte Yarbrough, 110 U. S. 651; Neal v. Delaware, 103 U. S. 370. A familiar example of this doctrine resulted from the impact of the adoption of the Amendment on state constitutions in which, at the time of the adoption of the Amendment, the right of suffrage turned into conferred on all white male citizens, given that, via the inherent power of the Amendment, the word white disappeared, and consequently all male residents, with out discrimination on account of race, coloration or preceding condition of servitude, got here under the popular grant of suffrage made by the State.

    With those standards earlier than us, how can there be room for any extreme dispute concerning the repugnancy of the standard based totally upon January 1, 1866 (a date which preceded the adoption of the Fifteenth Amendment), if the suffrage provision fixing that general is inclined of the significance which the Government attributes to it? Indeed, there seems no escape from the conclusion that to hold that there was even opportunity for dispute at the challenge could be however to declare that the Fifteenth Amendment now not most effective had now not the self-executing electricity which it has been recognized to have from the start, however that its provisions have been thoroughly inoperative, because prone of being rendered inapplicable by means of mere types of expression embodying no workout of judgment and resting upon no discernible reason aside from the motive to brush aside the prohibitions of the Amendment through developing a trendy of

    Page 238 U. S. 364

    balloting which on its face become, in substance, but a revitalization of situations which, once they prevailed within the past, had been destroyed by means of the self-operative pressure of the Amendment.

    2. The widespread of January 1, 1866, constant in the suffrage modification and its importance.

    The inquiry, of course, here is, does the amendment as to the particular general which this heading embraces involve the mere refusal to comply with the instructions of the Fifteenth Amendment as previously said? This leads us for the purpose of the analysis to recur to the text of the suffrage modification. Its opening sentence fixes the literacy fashionable, that is all-inclusive, because it is general in its expression and incorporates no word of discrimination attributable to race or color or some other purpose. This, however, is straight away followed via the provisions growing the same old based totally upon the condition present on January 1, 1866, and carving out those coming below that wellknown from the inclusion within the literacy test which might have controlled them however for the exclusion accordingly expressly furnished for. The provision is that this:

    "But no character who turned into, on January 1, 1866, or at any time prior thereto, entitled to vote beneath any shape of government, or who at that point resided in a few foreign kingdom, and no lineal descendant of such character, will be denied the proper to check in and vote because of his incapability to so examine and write sections of such charter."

    We have problem in locating phrases to more sincerely reveal the conviction we entertain that this widespread has the characteristics which the Government attributes to it than does the mere statement of the textual content. It is proper it consists of no express phrases of an exclusion from the standard which it establishes of any person attributable to race, colour, or previous situation of servitude prohibited with the aid of the Fifteenth Amendment, but the fashionable itself inherently brings that end result into existence, for the reason that it is primarily based

    Page 238 U. S. 365

    in basic terms upon a period of time before the enactment of the Fifteenth Amendment, and makes that duration the controlling and dominant check of the right of suffrage. In other words, we are seeking for in useless for any floor which could preserve some other interpretation but that the supply, recurring to the conditions current earlier than the Fifteenth Amendment was adopted and the continuance of which the Fifteenth Amendment prohibited, proposed by using, in substance and effect, lifting the ones situations over to a period of time after the Amendment to make them the idea of the proper to suffrage conferred in direct and wonderful push aside of the Fifteenth Amendment. And the same result, we're of opinion, is verified by using thinking about whether it's miles possible to find out any foundation of purpose for the standard as a result constant apart from the reason above stated. We say this because we are unable to find out how, except the prohibitions of the Fifteenth Amendment had been considered, the slightest cause became afforded for basing the class upon a time frame prior to the Fifteenth Amendment. Certainly it cannot be said that there has been any strange necromancy in the time named which engendered attributes affecting the qualification to vote which could now not exist at another and distinctive duration unless the Fifteenth Amendment become in view.

    While those concerns establish that the usual fixed on the idea of the 1866 test is void, they do no longer enable us to reply even to the first question asked by means of the court underneath, because, to achieve this, we must remember the literacy preferred hooked up by the suffrage change and the opportunity of its surviving the determination of the reality that the 1866 wellknown in no way took existence, because it became void from the start due to the operation upon it of the prohibitions of the Fifteenth Amendment. And this brings us to the closing heading:

    three. The dedication of the validity of the literacy test and the opportunity of its surviving the disappearance of the 1866

    Page 238 U. S. 366

    fashionable with which it's miles related within the suffrage amendment.

    No time want be spent at the question of the validity of the literacy test, taken into consideration on my own, in view that, as we have visible, its establishment was however the exercise via the State of a lawful strength vested in it no longer difficulty to our supervision, and, indeed, its validity is admitted. Whether this test is so linked with the other one referring to the scenario on January 1, 1866, that the invalidity of the latter requires the rejection of the former, is in reality a query of state regulation, but, inside the absence of any selection on the situation by means of the Supreme Court of the State, we need to determine it for ourselves. We are of opinion that neither types of category nor strategies of enumeration should be made the premise of putting down a provision which changed into independently criminal, and consequently changed into lawfully enacted because of the elimination of an illegal provision with which the felony provision or provisions may additionally had been related. We country what we keep to be the rule of thumb accordingly strongly due to the fact we are of opinion that, on a topic like the one underneath attention, regarding the established order of a proper whose workout lies at the very foundation of government, a much greater exacting standard is needed than would basically reap wherein the impact of the declared unconstitutionality of one provision of a statute upon every other and constitutional provision is required to be fixed. Of route, rigorous as is that this rule and imperative as is the responsibility no longer to violate it, it does now not suggest that it applies in a case where it expressly seems that a opposite end must be reached if the obvious letter and necessary intendment of the supply under attention so compels, or wherein the sort of result is rendered essential because to follow the opposite path might supply upward thrust to such an extreme and anomalous scenario as would motive it to be not possible to finish that it could have been upon any hypothesis anything in the mind of the lawmaking energy.

    Page 238 U. S. 367

    Does the general rule here govern, or is the case managed by way of one or the other of the superb conditions which we have just stated, is then the last question to be determined. Coming to solve it, we're of opinion that, with the aid of a attention of the textual content of the suffrage change insofar as it deals with the literacy check, and to the extent that it creates the standard based totally upon conditions existing on January 1, 1866, the case is taken out of the general rule and brought below the primary of the exceptions said. We say this because, in our opinion, the very language of the suffrage change expresses, no longer by implication nor by means of sorts of type nor by way of the order wherein they're made, however by using direct and effective language, the command that the persons embraced in the 1866 trendy ought to not be beneath any conditions subjected to the literacy test, a command which would be absolutely set at naught if at the obliteration of the only preferred through the force of the Fifteenth Amendment the other popular have to be held to retain in pressure.

    The motives formerly said put off the case and make it simple that it's miles our responsibility to reply the first query No, and the second one Yes; but before we direct the access of an order to that impact, we come in brief to do away with an issue the consideration of which we have hitherto postponed from a preference no longer to break the continuity of debate as to the overall and vital challenge before us.

    In diverse styles of assertion not difficult the instructions given with the aid of the trial court, concretely considered, concerning the liability of the election officials for his or her legitimate behavior, it's miles insisted that as, in connection with the commands, the jury turned into charged that the suffrage modification become unconstitutional because of its repugnancy to the Fifteenth Amendment, therefore, taken as an entire, the rate changed into misguided. But we are of opinion that this rivalry is without benefit, mainly in view

    Page 238 U. S. 368

    of the doctrine long considering settled concerning the self-executing strength of the Fifteenth Amendment, and of what we've got held to be the character and person of the suffrage change in query. The contention regarding the inapplicability of § 5508, Rev.Stat., now § 19 of the Penal Code, or of its repeal by means of implication, is absolutely spoke back via the ruling these days made in United States v. Mosley, No. 180, publish, p. 238 U. S. 383.

    We answer the primary query, No, and the second query, Yes.

    And it'll be so certified.

    MR. JUSTICE McREYNOLDS took no component inside the attention and choice of this situation.

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