25 N.Y.U. L. Rev. 316 (1950)
The Little Norris-LaGuardia Act and the New York Courts

handle is hein.journals/nylr25 and id is 318 raw text is: THE LITTLE NORRIS-LaGUARDIA ACT AND THE
NEW YORK COURTS
JACK M. PERLMAN
INTRODUCTION
In March, 1932, the Congress of the United States passed the
Norris-LaGuardia Act.1 It represented  ... the culmination of a
bitter political, social and economic controversy extending over half
a century. Hostility to 'government by injunction' has become the
rallying slogan of many and varied groups.'
In the half a century preceding the enactment of the Norris-
LaGuardia Act, courts throughout the country became the bane of
organized labor. This was particularly true of the federal courts.
A careful reading of Frankfurter and Greene's The Labor Injunc-
tion (1930) will indicate how persistently the federal judges had
abused their equity jurisdiction in labor controversies. Employers
sought and obtained sweeping injunctive relief on the flimsiest of
affidavits. Restraining orders were issued ex parte and without an
honest appraisal of the respective rights of the parties. The vice
was both procedural and substantive. In 1914, Congress made a
first attempt to stem the tide and enacted the Clayton Act.3 The
legislation was intended to impose procedural safeguards and also
to immunize certain types of labor controversies from injunctive
restraint. However, when the Clayton Act reached the courts, it
was accorded an exceedingly narrow construction and rendered all
but academic4
Consequently, the public demanded a statute which could with-
stand judicial sabotage, and that demand was eventually met by the
passage of the Norris-LaGuardia Act. Soon after its adoption, it
was copied, generally verbatim, by a large number of state legis-
latures5 including the legislature of the State of New York, which
JACK M. PERiz.AN is a member of the New York Bar.
1 47 STAT. 71, 29 U.S.C. § 107 (1946).
2 Milk Wagon Drivers Union v. Lake Valley, 311 U.S. 91, 102 (1940).
338 STAT. 738, 29 U.S.C. § 52 (1946).
4 Duplex Printing Press Company v. Deering, 254 U. S. 443 (1921); American
Steel Foundries v. Tri-City Central Trades Council, 257 U.S. 184 (1921).
SInd. Acts 1933, c. 12; Minn. Laws 1933, c. 416; Ore. Laws 1933, c. 355;
Wash. Laws 1933, c. 7; N. D. Laws 1935, c. 247; Mass. Acts 1935, c. 407; N. Y.
Laws 1935, c. 477; Conn. Laws 1939, c. 251; N. M. Laws 1939, c. 195. Wyoming,
Maine, and Rhode Island have enacted anti-injunction laws resembling the Norris-
LaGuardia Act but less extensive in scope.

Imaged with the Permission of N.Y.U. Law Review

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