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U.S. Dept. of Agriculture v. Moreno

United States Supreme Court
413 U.S. 528, 93 S. Ct. 2821 (1973)

U.S. Dept. of Agriculture v. Moreno


In 1964, Congress passed the Food Stamp Act to govern and reform its food stamp program. Section 3(e) of the Act excluded from participation in the food stamp program any household containing an individual who was unrelated to any other member of the household. Moreno (plaintiff) lived with Sanchez, a person to whom she was not related, and Sanchez’s three children. Moreno met all income and other requirements for receiving food stamps, however, her benefits were denied under § 3(e) of the Food Stamp Act. Sanchez’s benefits were also denied despite otherwise qualifying. Moreno brought suit against the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) (defendant) in federal district court seeking to enjoin enforcement of the act. The district court held that § 3(e) violated the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment. The USDA appealed to the United States Supreme Court.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Brennan, J.)

Concurrence (Douglas, J.)

Dissent (Rehnquist, J.)

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