The Supreme Court Decision Of The Lochner Era Essays

1184 Words Oct 16th, 2015 null Page
The Supreme Court decision in the Lochner case ushered in what is often referred to as the Lochner Era, which occurred between the years 1905 and 1937. During this time period, the doctrine of laissez-faire constitutionalism reigned within the Supreme Court. While many justices came and went during this era, the ideology of the majority of the Court remained the same. Lochner is viewed by some as a symbol of a conservative judiciary 's resistance to change. Despite the fact that support by the American public for a laissez faire-social Darwinism philosophy was weakening, the Court 's decision demonstrated its support for this doctrine and its rejection of Progressive Era economic and social reforms, which the majority of Americans supported. The Lochner decision was a major setback for reformers and unions alike. After the 1920s, when the Court took an even more conservative approach, the justices continued to invalidate reform laws "when a majority believed the state had stepped beyond the vague laissez-faire-social Darwinian boundaries that marked the limits of the police power" (Kens 162). In a series of cases spanning more than three decades, the Supreme Court would continue to strike down several laws dealing with the regulation of economic activity. While some cases that came before the Court gave reformers hope that the Lochner decision had been overturned—such as in the acceptance of Oregon 's ten-hour day limitation for workers in Bunting v. Oregon in…

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