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Katzenbach v. McClung

United States Supreme Court
379 U.S. 294 (1964)

Katzenbach v. McClung

Facts

In 1964, Congress passed the Civil Rights Act (CRA). Title II of the CRA forbids racial discrimination by places of public accommodation such as hotels and restaurants. The McClungs (plaintiffs) owned and operated Ollie’s Barbecue in Birmingham, Alabama and refused to serve African American customers. Approximately half of the food served by the restaurant moved in interstate commerce. The McClungs sued Katzenbach (defendant), the United States government actor responsible for enforcing the act, to enjoin the act's enforcement against the McClungs. The action was brought in federal district court. The district court issued an injunction preventing enforcement of the Act against the McClungs. The United States government appealed. This case was decided by the United States Supreme Court along with Heart of Atlanta Motel, Inc. v. United States, 379 U.S. 241 (1964).

Rule of Law

The rule of law is the black letter law upon which the court rested its decision.

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Clark, J.)

The holding and reasoning section includes:

  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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