Hall v. Beals

PETITIONER: Hall
RESPONDENT: Beals
LOCATION: 17th Judicial Circuit Green County Alabama Jury Commission

DOCKET NO.: 39
DECIDED BY: Burger Court (1969-1970)
LOWER COURT:

CITATION: 396 US 45 (1969)
ARGUED: Oct 14, 1969
DECIDED: Oct 14, 1969

Facts of the case

Question

Media for Hall v. Beals

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - October 14, 1969 in Hall v. Beals

Warren E. Burger:

Number 39, Hall against Beals and others.

Mr. Hall.

Richard A. Hall:

Yes, sir.

Warren E. Burger:

You may proceed whenever you're ready.

Richard A. Hall:

Mr. Chief Justice and may it please the Court.

I am Richard Hall, appellant pro se in this case.

I appear this morning to appeal from a decision of the United States District Court for the District of Colorado, which decision upheld the constitutionality of a Colorado law which requires that a voter be a resident of the State of Colorado for six months before being allowed to vote for president and vice-president.

I must state to the Court that the law has since been amended by the Colorado legislature and it now requires a two-month residence.

Warren E. Burger:

But you're position is the two months is just as bad as six months or one year.

Richard A. Hall:

Yes, sir.

The facts in this case--

Potter Stewart:

Although, if it had been two month at the time you wanted to vote, you wouldn't have been able to bring this lawsuit, I suppose.

Richard A. Hall:

I wouldn't have been able to.

Potter Stewart:

No.

Richard A. Hall:

No, sir.

Potter Stewart:

But you could've voted.

Richard A. Hall:

Yes, sir, but at the time, I was disenfranchised and I am now the representative of a class of all voters who were disenfranchised by similar qualms.

Potter Stewart:

Well, you -- well, we both know there's a mootness question in this case.

Richard A. Hall:

Yes, sir.

Potter Stewart:

I presume you'll address yourself to it.

Richard A. Hall:

Yes, sir.

Byron R. White:

You can be representative of the class and not be a member of it, I suppose.

Richard A. Hall:

Well, I was a member of the class at the time the -- of my case, Your Honor, and I was disenfranchised and was prevented from voting.

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

By any residence requirement, it wouldn't matter as to the class what the length of the residence requirement was, I gather, is that your position?

Richard A. Hall:

Well, the residence requirements vary per state.

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

Well, in other words, at the time you brought the lawsuit, you could've --

Richard A. Hall:

It was six months and I was disenfranchised.

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

Yes, and you couldn't appear for anyone except the resident at Colorado, I take it.

Richard A. Hall:

Well, Your Honor, I believe the problem is similar in all the states.

William J. Brennan, Jr.:

I know, but --