Front Page Titles (by Subject) § 20.: Privilege of legislators.— - A Treatise on State and Federal Control of Persons and Property in the United States considered from both a Civil and Criminal Standpoint, vol. 1
§ 20.: Privilege of legislators.— - Christopher G. Tiedeman, A Treatise on State and Federal Control of Persons and Property in the United States considered from both a Civil and Criminal Standpoint, vol. 1 
A Treatise on State and Federal Control of Persons and Property in the United States considered from both a Civil and Criminal Standpoint (St. Louis: The F.H. Thomas Law Book Co., 1900). Vol. 1.
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- Preface to the Second Edition.
- State and Federal Control of Persons and Property. Vol. I.
- Chapter I.: Scope of the Government Control and Regulation of Personal Rights.
- § 1.: Police Power—defined and Explained.—
- § 2.: The Legal Limitations Upon Police Power.—
- § 3.: Construction of Constitutional Limitations.—
- § 4.: The Principal Constitutional Limitations.—
- § 5.: Table of Private Rights.—
- Chapter II.: Government Regulation of Personal Security.
- § 10.: Security to Life.—
- § 11.: Capital Punishment, When Cruel and Unusual.—
- § 12.: Security to Limb and Body—general Statement.—
- § 13.: Corporal Punishment—when a Cruel and Unusual Punishment.—
- § 14.: Personal Chastisement In Certain Relations.—
- § 15.: Battery In Self-defense.—
- § 16.: Abortion.—
- § 17.: Compulsory Submission to Surgical and Medical Treatment.—
- § 18.: Security to Health—legalized Nuisance.—
- § 19.: Security to Reputation—privileged Communications. 3 —
- § 20.: Privilege of Legislators.—
- § 21.: Privilege In Judicial Proceedings.—
- § 22.: Criticism of Officers and Candidates For Office.—
- § 23.: Publications Through the Press.—
- § 24.: Security to Reputation—malicious Prosecution.—
- § 25.: Advice of Counsel, How Far a Defense.—
- Chapter III.: Personal Liberty.
- § 26.: Personal Liberty—how Guaranteed.—
- Chapter IV.: Government Control of Criminal Classes.
- § 27.: The Effect of Crime On the Rights of the Criminal—power of State to Declare What Is a Crime.—
- § 28.: Due Process of Law.—
- § 29.: Bills of Attainder.—
- § 30.: Ex Post Facto Laws.—
- § 31.: Cruel and Unusual Punishment In Forfeiture of Personal Liberty and Rights of Property.—
- § 32.: Preliminary Confinement to Answer For a Crime—commitment of Witnesses.—
- § 33.: What Constitutes a Lawful Arrest.—
- § 34.: Arrests Without a Warrant.—
- § 35.: The Trial of the Accused.—
- § 36.: The Trial Must Be Speedy.—
- § 37.: Trials Must Be Public.—
- § 38.: Accused Entitled to Counsel.—
- § 39.: Indictment By Grand Jury Or By Information.—
- § 40.: The Plea of Defendant.—
- § 41.: Trial By Jury—legal Jeopardy.—
- § 42.: Right of Appeal.—
- § 43.: Imprisonment For Crime—hard Labor—control of Convicts In Prison.—
- § 43 A.: Convict Lease System.—
- Chapter V.: The Control of Dangerous Classes, Otherwise Than By Criminal Prosecution.
- § 44.: Confinement For Infectious and Contagious Diseases.—
- § 45.: The Confinement of the Insane.—
- § 46.: Control of the Insane In the Asylum.—
- § 47.: Punishment of the Criminal Insane.—
- § 48.: Confinement of Habitual Drunkards.—
- § 49.: Police Control of Vagrants.—
- § 50.: Police Regulation of Mendicancy.—
- § 51.: Police Supervision of Habitual Criminals.—
- § 52.: State Control of Minors.—
- Chapter VI.: Regulations of the Rights of Citizenship and Domicile.
- § 53.: Citizenship and Domicile Distinguished.—
- § 54.: Expatriation.—
- § 55.: Naturalization.—
- § 56.: Prohibition of Emigration.—
- § 57.: Compulsory Emigration.—
- § 58.: Prohibition of Immigration.—
- § 59.: The Public Duties of a Citizen.—
- Chapter VII.: State Regulation of Morality and Religion.
- § 60.: Crime and Vice Distinguished—their Relation to Police Power.—
- § 61.: Sumptuary Laws.—
- § 62.: Church and State—historical Synopsis.—
- § 63.: Police Regulation of Religion—constitutional Restrictions.—
- § 64.: State Control of Churches and Congregations.—
- § 65.: Religious Criticism and Blasphemy Distinguished.—
- § 66.: Permissible Limitations Upon Religious Worship.—
- § 67.: Religious Discrimination In Respect to Admissibility of Testimony.—
- § 68.: Sunday Laws.—
- Chapter VIII.: Freedom of Speech and Liberty of the Press.
- § 81.: Police Supervision Prohibited By the Constitutions.—
- Chapter IX.: Regulation of Trades and Occupations.
- § 85.: General Propositions.—
- § 86.: Prohibition As to Certain Classes.—
- § 87.: Police Regulation of Skilled Trades and Learned Professions.—
- § 88.: Regulation of Practice In the Learned Professions.—
- § 89.: Regulation of Sale of Certain Articles of Merchandise.—
- § 90.: Regulations to Prevent Fraud.—
- § 91.: Legal Tender and Regulation of Currency.—
- § 92.: Free Coinage of Silver and the Legal Tender Decisions.—
- § 93.: Legislative Restraint of Importations—protective Tariffs.—
- § 94.: Liberty of Contract, a Constitutional Right.—
- § 95.: Compulsory Formation of Business Relations—common Carriers and Innkeepers Exceptions to the Rule—theaters and Other Places of Amusement.—
- § 96.: Regulation of Prices and Charges.—
- § 97.: Later Cases On Regulating Prices and Charges—regulations Must Be Reasonable—what Is a Reasonable Regulation, a Judicial Question.—
- § 98.: Police Regulation of the Labor Contract.—
- § 99.: Regulation of Wages of Workmen—mode of Measuring Payment—compulsory Insurance and Membership In Benefit Societies—release From Liability For Injuries to Employees.—
- § 100.: Regulation of Wages of Workmen, Continued—time of Payment—medium of Payment—fines and Deductions For Imperfect Work—mechanics’ Lien and Exemption of Wages.—
- § 101.: Prohibition of Employment of Aliens—exportation of Laborers—importation of Alien Laborers Under Contract—chinese Labor—employers Compelling Workmen to Leave Unions.—
- § 102.: Regulating Hours of Labor.—
- § 103.: Regulations of Factories, Mines and Workshops—sweatshops. 1 —
- § 104.: Period of Hiring—breach Or Termination of Labor Contract—compulsory Performance of Labor Contract—requirement of Notice of Discharge—employers Required to Give Statement of Reasons For Discharge.—
- § 105.: Regulations of the Business of Insurance.—
- § 106.: Usury and Interest Laws.—
- § 107.: Prevention of Speculation.—
- § 108.: Prevention of Combinations In Restraint of Trade.—
- § 109.: A Combination to “corner” the Market.—
- § 109a.: Contracts Against Liability For Negligence Prohibited.—
- § 110.: Common Law Prohibition of Combinations In Restraint of Trade Restated.—
- § 111.: Industrial and Corporate Trusts, As Combinations In Restraint of Trade.—
- § 112.: Modern Statutory Legislation Against Trade Combinations, Virtual Monopolies, and Contracts In Restraint of Trade.—
- § 113.: Different Phases of the Application of Anti-trust Statutes—factor’s System—control of Patents—combinations Against Dishonest Debtors—agreements to Sell Only to Regular Dealers—combinations of Employers to Resist Combinations of Employees—departmen
- § 114.: Labor Combinations—trades Unions—strikes.—
- § 115.: Strikes, Continued, and Boycotts.—
- § 116.: Wagering Contracts Prohibited.—
- § 117.: Option Contracts, When Illegal.—
- § 118.: General Prohibition of Contracts On the Ground of Public Policy.—
- § 119.: Licenses.—
- § 120.: Prohibition of Occupations In General. 5 —
- § 121.: Prohibition of Trade In Vice—social Evil, Gambling, Horse-racing.—
- § 122.: Prohibition of Trades For the Prevention of Fraud—adulterations of Goods—harmful Or Dangerous Goods—prohibition of Sale of Oleomargarine.—
- § 123.: Prohibition of Ticket-brokerage—ticket-scalping Prohibited and Punished.—
- § 124.: Prohibition of Sale of Game Out of Season—prohibition of Export of Game.—
- § 125.: Prohibition of the Liquor Trade.—
- § 126.: Police Control of Employments In Respect to Locality. 3 —
- § 127.: Monopolies—general Propositions.—
- § 128.: Monopolies and Exclusive Franchises In the Cases of Railroads, Bridges, Ferries, Street Railways, Gas, Water, Lighting, Telephone and Telegraph Companies.—
- § 129.: Patents and Copyrights, How Far Monopolies.—
- § 130.: When Ordinary Occupations May Be Made Exclusive Monopolies—saloons—banking—insurance—peddling—building and Loan Associations—restriction of Certain Trades to Certain Localities—slaughterhouses—markets.—
- § 131.: National, State and Municipal Monopolies.—
Privilege of legislators.—
In order that the legislator may, in the performance of his official duties, feel himself free from all restraining influences and able to act without fear or favor of anyone whatsoever, it is usually provided by a constitutional clause that he shall not be subjected elsewhere to any legal liability for any statement he may have made in speech or debate. Inasmuch as this absolute privilege is established in behalf of the legislator, not for his own benefit, but with a view to promote the public good, and inasmuch as the houses of Congress and of the State legislatures have the power to punish their members for disorderly behavior and unparliamentary language, a most liberal construction is given to this constitutional provision. “These privileges (the privilege of legislators from arrest and from liability for false statements in speech or debate) are thus secured, not with the intention of protecting the members against prosecutions for their own benefit, but to support the rights of the people, by enabling their representatives to execute the functions of their office without fear of prosecutions civil or criminal. I therefore think that the article ought not to be construed strictly, but liberally, that the full design of it may be answered. I will not confine it to delivering an opinion, uttering a speech, or haranguing in debate, but will extend it to the giving of a vote, to the making of a written report, and to every other act resulting from the nature and in the execution of the office; and I would define the article as securing to every member exemption from prosecution for everything said or done by him, as a representative, in the exercise of the functions of that office, without inquiring whether the exercise was regular and according to the rules of the house, or irregular and against their rules. I do not confine the member to his place in the house, and I am satisfied that there are cases in which he is entitled to this privilege when not within the walls of the representatives’ chamber. He cannot be exercising the functions of his office as the member of a body, unless the body be in existence. The house must be in session to enable him to claim this privilege, and it is in session, notwithstanding occasional adjournments for short intervals for the convenience of its members. If a member, therefore, be out of the chamber, sitting in committee, executing the commission of the house, it appears to me that such a member is within the reason of the article, and ought to be considered within the privilege. The body of which he is a member is in session, and he, as a member of that body, is in fact discharging the duties of his office. He ought, therefore, to be protected from civil or criminal prosecutions for everything said or done by him in the exercise of his functions, as a representative, in debating or assenting to or drafting a report. Neither can I deny the member his privilege when executing the duties of his office, in convention of both houses, although the convention should be holden in the senate chamber.” But even to so absolute a privilege as this, there is a limitation. Because a man holds the position of a legislator, the public interests do not require that he be given unlimited license to slander whom he pleases, and to screen himself from a just retribution under his legislative privilege. It is only when he is acting in his official capacity, that he can claim this protection. If, therefore, the slanderous statement has no relevancy to any public business or duty, is not even remotely pertinent to public questions then under discussion, the legislator in his utterance of them subjects himself to civil and criminal liability. A similar exemption from responsibility for official utterances is guaranteed to the President of the United States and to the governors of the several States.
The provision in the United States constitution is, “And for any speech or debate in either house, they (the members of Congress) shall not be questioned in any other place.” U. S. Const. art. I., § 6. It is believed that similar provisions are to be found in every State constitution having reference to members of State legislatures, except those of North Carolina, South Carolina, Mississippi, Texas, California and Nevada. Cooley Const. Lim. *446, note 1.
Coffin v. Coffin, 4 Mass. 1, 27 (3 Am. Dec. 189). The constitutional provision, which was in force when this case arose, was as follows: “The freedom of deliberation, speech and debate in either house, cannot be the foundation of any accusation or prosecution, action or complaint, in any other court or place whatever.”
Coffin v. Coffin, 4 Mass. 1 (3 Am. Dec. 189); State v. Burnham, 9 N. H. 34; Perkins v. Mitchell, 31 Barb. 461.
Cooley on Torts, 214.