Washington Law Review


Gordon Jaynes


Since the time of the Alien and Sedition Laws of 1798, the national and state governments have sporadically enacted legislation intended to inhibit and punish activity subversive to existing government. Since Jefferson's time, such legislation has had both impassioned advocates and embittered opponents. It is the product of eras of political tension. Inherent in these laws is the danger that zealousness in the preservation of the integrity of government may violate political rights guaranteed by our constitutions. An examination of their constitutionality need imply no judgment regarding the political wisdom of their enactment nor the manner of their enforcement, and none is here intended

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