YOUNGSTOWN SHEET & TUBE CO. v. SAWYER

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Case Basics
Docket No. 
744
Petitioner 
Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co.
Respondent 
Sawyer
Term:
Facts of the Case 

In April of 1952, during the Korean War, President Truman issued an executive order directing Secretary of Commerce Charles Sawyer to seize and operate most of the nation's steel mills. This was done in order to avert the expected effects of a strike by the United Steelworkers of America.

Question 

Did the President have the constitutional authority to seize and operate the steel mills?

Conclusion 
Decision: 6 votes for Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co., 3 vote(s) against
Legal provision: US Const. Art. II

In a 6-to-3 decision, the Court held that the President did not have the authority to issue such an order. The Court found that there was no congressional statute that authorized the President to take possession of private property. The Court also held that the President's military power as Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces did not extend to labor disputes. The Court argued that "the President's power to see that the laws are faithfully executed refutes the idea that he is to be a lawmaker."

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YOUNGSTOWN SHEET & TUBE CO. v. SAWYER. The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. 15 April 2014. <http://www.oyez.org/cases/1950-1959/1951/1951_744>.
YOUNGSTOWN SHEET & TUBE CO. v. SAWYER, The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1950-1959/1951/1951_744 (last visited April 15, 2014).
"YOUNGSTOWN SHEET & TUBE CO. v. SAWYER," The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, accessed April 15, 2014, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1950-1959/1951/1951_744.