Holland (Game Warden)
The State of Missouri brought a bill
in equity to prevent a federal game warden of the United States
from attempting to enforce the 1918 Migratory Bird Treaty Act,
contending that the statute is an unconstitutional interference
with the States' Tenth Amendment reserved rights.
A 1916 treaty between the U.S. and
Great Britain provided for closed hunting seasons on certain
birds, and stipulated that the two countries would propose the
treaty be codified by their respective law-making bodies.
The 1918 Act prevented the killing,
capturing or selling of any of the migratory birds listed in the
statute except as permitted by federal regulations compatible
with those terms.
District Court of the United States
for the Western District of Missouri dismissed the State's
action against appellee United States Game Warden challenging a
migratory bird treaty
By Article VI,
treaties made under the
authority of the United States are declared the supreme law of
Necessary and Proper Clause
treaty is valid, a
statute made in pursuance of
the treaty is valid under the
Necessary and Proper Clause.
Acts of Congress are the supreme law of the land
when made in pursuance of
Treaties are valid when made under
the authority of the United States.
There may be urgent national matters
that an act of Congress could not deal with but that a treaty
followed by such an act could.
In this case
Here a national interest of the
highest magnitude is involved.
It can be protected only by a treaty
with another power.
The birds are only transitorily in
the State and have no permanent habitat in the State.
But for the treaty there might soon
not be any migratory birds for any powers to deal with.
Nothing in the Constitution
prohibits the Federal Government to sit by while a food supply
is cut off and the protectors of our crops and forests are
We are of the opinion that the
treaty and the statute must be upheld.
Article II, Section2 Presidents Power to Make Treaties
The power to make
treaties is delegated
expressly to the President.
shall have power, by and with the advice and consent of the
Senate, to make treaties, provided
two thirds of the Senators
Article VI Supremacy Clause
made under the authority of the United States are declare the
Supreme Law of the Land.
Constitution, and the laws of the United States
which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and
all TREATIES made, or which
shall be made, under the authority of the United States,
shall be the supreme law of the
Article I, Section 8
treaty is valid there can be no dispute about the
validity of the statute under Article I, Section 8.
Necessary and Proper Clause
make all laws which shall be
necessary and proper
for carrying into execution the foregoing powers,
and all other powers vested by this Constitution in the
government of the United States, or in any department or officer