Thomas McIntyre Cooley

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Cooley, Thomas McIntyre,

1824–98, American jurist, b. near Attica, N.Y. He was a judge (1864–85) of the supreme court of Michigan and was the first chairman (1887–91) of the Interstate Commerce Commission. His best-known work is A Treatise on the Constitutional Limitations Which Rest upon the Legislative Power of the States (1868, 8th ed. 1927). Cooley argued that the U.S. Constitution contained not only direct limitations on the power of the states (e.g., the prohibition in Article I, Section 10, against a state's impairing the obligations of contract) but also implied limitations that could be deduced from the political theory underlying the Constitution. For example, from the division of American governments into executive, legislative, and judicial branches he inferred the freedom of the judiciary from legislative interference. Cooley's study was highly influential in the early interpretation of the due process clause of the Fourteenth AmendmentFourteenth Amendment,
addition to the U.S. Constitution, adopted 1868. The amendment comprises five sections. Section 1

Section 1 of the amendment declares that all persons born or naturalized in the United States are American citizens and citizens of their state
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 to the Constitution. He also wrote extensively on the law of torts and taxation.


See C. E. Jacobs, Law Writers and the Courts (1954, repr. 1973); A. R. Jones, The Constitutional Conservatism of Thomas McIntyre Cooley (1987).

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