United Public Workers v. Mitchell

PETITIONER:United Public Workers of America (C.I.O.), et al.
RESPONDENT:Harry B. Mitchell, et al.
LOCATION: United States District Court for the District of Columbia

DECIDED BY: Vinson Court (1946-1949)

ARGUED: Dec 03, 1945 / Oct 17, 1946
DECIDED: Feb 10, 1947

Lee Pressman – For the Appellants
Ralph F. Fuchs – For the Appellee

Facts of the case

In 1940, Congress enacted the Hatch Act, which made it illegal for any officer or employee of the executive branch of the federal government to take an active role in political management or political campaigns. The appellants sued the members of the United States Civil Service Commission, responsible for enforcing the Hatch Act, and sought an injunction against the enforcement of the provisions of the Act regulating political action. They argued that section of the Act was unconstitutional. None of the appellants, with the exception of George Poole, were facing disciplinary action for violating the Act. The district court held the section in question constitutional and granted summary judgment in favor of the appellees. The case was appealed to the Supreme Court, but the appeal was not docketed until more than 60 days after the appeal was allowed. The appellees argued that, because the proper appeals process was not followed, the Supreme Court did not have jurisdiction over the case.


Does the Supreme Court have jurisdiction over an appeal that was not docketed within 60 days from the time the appeal was allowed?

(1) Does the case present a justiciable issue if only one of the appellants was accused of violating the Act?

(2) Does the Hatch Act unconstitutionally restrict the rights of employees of the federal government?