Thursday, May 10, 2012

In Memoriam: Nicholas deBelleville Katzenbach

Law students know him as the "Katzenbach" of Katzenbach v. McClung, 379 U.S. 29 (1964), the "Ollies BBQ case" upholding Congressional power under the Commerce Clause for the accomodations portions of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and of Katzenbach v. Morgan, 384 U.S. 641 (1966), the "Puerto Rican voting case" upholding Congressional power under §5 of the Fourteenth Amendment for the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Nicholas deBelleville Katzenbach served as Attorney General (and Acting Attorney General) in the LBJ Administration, litigating a host of civil rights cases. 

The NYT obituary highlights Katzenbach's actions during the civil rights era: "Perhaps his tensest moment came on June 11, 1963, when he confronted George C. Wallace in stifling heat on the steps of the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa." 

The WaPo obituary places him at the center of government during a turbulent era: "Katzenbach’s time in government was like a history of government in the 1960s: The Bay of Pigs. The Cuban Missile Crisis. Integration of schools. The Warren Report. The Civil Rights Act. Vietnam."   It also links him as a source for Robert Caro's biography of LBJ.

The ACS Blog has a moving personal remembrance by Estelle Rogers. 

[image: Katzenbach, 1968, via]

Cases and Case Materials, Commerce Clause, Fourteenth Amendment, History | Permalink

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