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Joint Anti-Fascist Refugee Committee v. McGrath

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Administrative Law Keyed to Lawson

Citation. Joint Anti-Fascist Refugee Committee v. McGrath, 341 U.S. 123, 71 S. Ct. 624, 95 L. Ed. 817, 1951 U.S. LEXIS 2349 (U.S. Apr. 30, 1951)

Brief Fact Summary. Petitioners were organizations that had been designated “communist”ť by the Attorney General of the United States (Respondents), and brought complaints that the labeling violated their constitutional due process rights.

Synopsis of Rule of Law. The court applied the “arbitrary and capricious”ť standard.

Facts. Petitioners were organizations that engaged solely in charitable or insurance activities and had been designated “communist”ť by the Attorney General and included in a list of organizations furnished to the Loyalty Review Board of the United States Civil Service Commission. The Attorney General derived his authority from Executive Order No. 9835 (Order), issued by the President on March 21, 1951. Petitioners alleged that their organizations were involved in charitable and civic duties that were helpful to their communities, and not anti-communist. Petitioners claimed their constitutional rights were violated because they received no notice, disclosure of reasons justifying the label, or opportunity to respond and establish their innocence. The complaints were dismissed for failure to state a claim for which relief could be granted.

Issue. In the face of the facts alleged in the complaint and therefore admitted by the motion to dismiss, did the Attorney General have authority to include the complaining organization in the list of organizations designated by him as Communist?

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