January 5, 2008
A Great Quote from Chief Justice John Marshall
Chief Justice John Marshall dealt with the issue in 1819 of whether or not the states could pass insolvency laws given the language in the Constitution that Congress shall have the power to "establish uniform laws upon the subject of bankruptcies,"
In Sturgis v. Crowninshield, 17 U.S. 122 (1819), he said the states do have that power (at least when there is no national bankruptcy law in effect at the time).
This is a great quote:
"[I]f, in any case, the plain meaning of a provision, not contradicted by any other provision in the same instrument, is to be disregarded, because we believe the framers of that instrument could not intend what they say, it must be one in which the absurdity and injustice of applying the provision to the case, would be so monstrous, that all mankind would, without hesitation, unite in rejecting the application."
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