International Ladies Garment Workers Union v. Donnelly Garment Co, No. 801

CourtUnited States Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtPER CURIAM; CARDOZO
Citation304 U.S. 243,58 S.Ct. 875,82 L.Ed. 1316
Decision Date16 May 1938
Docket NumberNo. 801
PartiesINTERNATIONAL LADIES' GARMENT WORKERS' UNION et al. v. DONNELLY GARMENT CO. et al

304 U.S. 243
58 S.Ct. 875
82 L.Ed. 1316
INTERNATIONAL LADIES' GARMENT WORKERS' UNION et al.

v.

DONNELLY GARMENT CO. et al.

No. 801.
Argued April 27, 1938.
Decided May 16, 1938.

Page 244

Messrs. Frank P. Walsh and Jerome Walsh, both of Kansas City, Mo., for appellants.

Messrs. James A. Reed and William S. Hogsett, both of Kansas City, Mo., for appellees.

PER CURIAM.

This is a direct appeal to this Court from a decree of the District Court, three judges sitting, denying a motion to dismiss the complaint and granting an interlocutory injunction. The question arises whether such an appeal lies.

Appellants rely upon the Act of August 24, 1937, c. 754, 50 Stat. 751, 28 U.S.C.A. §§ 17, 349a, 380a and note, 401. Section 3 of that act, 28 U.S.C.A. § 380a, the full text of which is quoted in the margin,1 provides that 'No interlocutory

Page 245

or permanent injunction suspending or restraining the enforcement, operation, or execution of, or setting aside, in whole or in part, any Act of Congress upon the ground that such Act or any part thereof is repugnant to the Consti-

Page 246

tution of the United States' shall be granted by a District Court 'unless the application for the same' shall be heard and determined by three judges. When there is an application for such an injunction, three judges are to be con-

Page 247

vened and the hearing of the application is to be expedited. An appeal may be taken directly to this Court from a decree 'granting or denying, after notice and hearing, an interlocutory or permanent injunction in such case.'

We are of the opinion that the instant case does not fall within these provisions. This is not a suit to restrain the enforcement of an act of Congress, and no application was made for such an injunction.

This suit was brought on July 5, 1937, by the appellees, Donnelly Garment Company and Donnelly Garment Sales Company, to obtain an injunction restraining the appellants, International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union, its officers and agents, from committing certain acts alleged to be in furtherance of a conspiracy in violation of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, 15 U.S.C.A. §§ 1—7, 15 note, and the Clayton Act, 38 Stat. 730, 15 U.S.C. c. 1, § 12 et seq. The conduct sought to be restrained consisted of picketing, boycotting, and certain interferences with plaintiffs' business, their employees and customers. Appellee Donnelly Garment Workers' Union and its representatives were permitted to intervene and sought similar relief. Their petition in intervention alleged that the defendants (appellants) had not been and were not engaged in a labor dispute within the meaning of the Act of Congress of March 23, 1932, c. 90, 49 Stat. 70, known as the Norris-LaGuardia Act, 29 U.S.C.A. § 101 et seq., nor within the meaning of the Act of Congress of July 5, 1935, c. 372, 49 Stat. 449, known as the National Labor Relations Act, 29 U.S.C.A. § 151 et seq., and that no labor dispute was involved in this litigation. They

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further stated that, 'if the actions and course of conduct of the defendants' were construed to be a 'labor dispute' within the meaning of those statutes, the latter would be unconstitutional, as so interpreted, because in contravention of the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution of the United States and of article 2, section 30, of the Constitution of the state of Missouri. By their amended bill of complaint, appellees, the original plaintiffs, made similar allegations as to the inapplicability of the Norris-LaGuardia Act and its invalidity if held applicable.

On the presentation of the bill, the District Judge granted a temporary restraining order enjoining the defendants' conduct of which complaint was made. A motion to dissolve the restraining order and to dismiss the complaint was denied on August 13, 1937. D.C., 20 F.Supp. 767. After the passage of the Act of August 24, 1937, the District Judge certified to the Attorney General that the constitutionality of the Norris-LaGuardia Act and of the National Labor Relations Act had been 'drawn in question.' On the request of the District Judge, a court of three judges was constituted. The motion of the defendants to dismiss the bill and to vacate the temporary restraining order, and the motion of the plaintiffs for an interlocutory injunction restraining the defendants from committing the alleged unlawful acts in pursuance of a conspiracy in violation of the Anti-Trust Acts, were then heard. The motion to dismiss was denied and the interlocutory injunction was granted as prayed. 21 F.Supp. 807.

There was no application before the District Court for an injunction restraining the enforcement of any act of Congress.In considering the application for an injunction restraining defendants from picketing, boycotting, etc., the District Court found that the ground of defense was the defendants' contention that the Norris-LaGuardia Act deprived the District Court of jurisdiction. The

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court held that that act had no application to the controversy, and that it was unnecessary to resolve the constitutional question presented as to its validity. 21 F.Supp. pages 811, 814.

The Act of August 24, 1937, carefully distinguishes between the different situations to which its provisions are addressed. Section 1, 28 U.S.C.A. § 401, applies 'whenever the constitutionality of any Act of Congress affecting the public interest is drawn in question' in any court of the United States in any suit or proceeding to which the United States, or its agency, officer, or employee, as such, is not a party. The fact that such a question is involved must be certified to the Attorney General and the United States must be permitted to intervene with all the rights of a party. To make that provision applicable it is enough that a question as to the constitutionality of an act...

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47 practice notes
  • Kesler v. Department of Public Safety, Financial Responsibility Division, State of Utah, No. 14
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • March 26, 1962
    ...requirement is not to be invoked on a contingent constitutional question. International Ladies' Garment Workers v. Donnelly Co., 304 U.S. 243, 251, 58 S.Ct. 875, 879, 82 L.Ed. 1316. The Court has been consistent in this view in deal- Page 157 ing with claims of conflict between a state stat......
  • Walters v. National Association of Radiation Survivors, No. 84-571
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • June 28, 1985
    ...curiam ); Fleming v. Rhodes, 331 U.S. 100, 103-104, 67 S.Ct. 1140, 1142, 91 L.Ed. 1368 (1947); Garment Workers' v. Donnelly Garment Co., 304 U.S. 243, 249, 58 S.Ct. 875, 879, 82 L.Ed. 1316 (1938). 10. Cohen v. Beneficial Industrial Loan Corp., 337 U.S. 541, 546, 69 S.Ct. 1221, 1225, 93 L.Ed......
  • Copeland v. Secretary of State
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. Southern District of New York
    • January 23, 1964
    ...court procedure is not to be invoked on a "contingent constitutional question." International Ladies Garment Workers Union v. Donnelly, 304 U.S. 243, 251, 58 S.Ct. 875, 82 L.Ed. 1316 (1938); Bauer v. Acheson, 106 F.Supp. 445 (D.C.1952); McCain v. Davis, 217 F.Supp. 661 (E.D.La.1963). Adjudi......
  • Rusk v. Cort, No. 20
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • April 2, 1962
    ...v. Whittier, 365 U.S. 465, 81 S.Ct. 712, 5 L.Ed.2d 704; compare International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union v. Donnelly Garment Co., 304 U.S. 243, 251—252, 58 S.Ct. 875, 880, 82 L.Ed. 1316. 5. Section 360(a), 66 Stat. 163, 273, 8 U.S.C. § 1503(a), 8 U.S.C.A. § 1503(a): '(a) If any person w......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
47 cases
  • Kesler v. Department of Public Safety, Financial Responsibility Division, State of Utah, No. 14
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • March 26, 1962
    ...requirement is not to be invoked on a contingent constitutional question. International Ladies' Garment Workers v. Donnelly Co., 304 U.S. 243, 251, 58 S.Ct. 875, 879, 82 L.Ed. 1316. The Court has been consistent in this view in deal- Page 157 ing with claims of conflict between a state stat......
  • Walters v. National Association of Radiation Survivors, No. 84-571
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • June 28, 1985
    ...curiam ); Fleming v. Rhodes, 331 U.S. 100, 103-104, 67 S.Ct. 1140, 1142, 91 L.Ed. 1368 (1947); Garment Workers' v. Donnelly Garment Co., 304 U.S. 243, 249, 58 S.Ct. 875, 879, 82 L.Ed. 1316 (1938). 10. Cohen v. Beneficial Industrial Loan Corp., 337 U.S. 541, 546, 69 S.Ct. 1221, 1225, 93 L.Ed......
  • Copeland v. Secretary of State
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. Southern District of New York
    • January 23, 1964
    ...court procedure is not to be invoked on a "contingent constitutional question." International Ladies Garment Workers Union v. Donnelly, 304 U.S. 243, 251, 58 S.Ct. 875, 82 L.Ed. 1316 (1938); Bauer v. Acheson, 106 F.Supp. 445 (D.C.1952); McCain v. Davis, 217 F.Supp. 661 (E.D.La.1963). Adjudi......
  • Rusk v. Cort, No. 20
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • April 2, 1962
    ...v. Whittier, 365 U.S. 465, 81 S.Ct. 712, 5 L.Ed.2d 704; compare International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union v. Donnelly Garment Co., 304 U.S. 243, 251—252, 58 S.Ct. 875, 880, 82 L.Ed. 1316. 5. Section 360(a), 66 Stat. 163, 273, 8 U.S.C. § 1503(a), 8 U.S.C.A. § 1503(a): '(a) If any person w......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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