Privileges or Immunities
80 Pages Posted: 25 Feb 2010 Last revised: 23 Feb 2017
Date Written: February 23, 2010
What was meant by the Fourteenth Amendment’s Privileges or Immunities Clause? Did it incorporate the U.S. Bill of Rights against the states? Long ignored evidence clearly shows that the Clause was an attempt to resolve a national dispute about the Comity Clause rights of free blacks. In this context, the phrase “the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States” was a label for Comity Clause rights, and the Fourteenth Amendment used this phrase to make clear that free blacks were entitled to such rights.
Keywords: privileges or immunities, incorporation, bill of rights, fourteenth amendment, slavery, race, modernity, mobility
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