Marchioro v. Chaney
442 U.S. 191 (1979)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Marchioro v. Chaney, 442 U.S. 191 (1979)

Marchioro v. Chaney

No. 78-647

Argued March 26, 1979

Decided June 4, 1979

442 U.S. 191


Held: A Washington statute that requires each major political party to have a State Committee consisting of two persons from each county in the State does not, by so restricting the composition of the State Committee, violate the rights of members of a political party to freedom of association protected by the First and Fourteenth Amendments insofar as concerns the Committee's activities involving purely internal party decisions. None of these activities -- such as exercising the party's policymaking functions when the party's State Convention is in adjournment, directing the party's administrative apparatus, raising and distributing funds to party candidates, conducting workshops to instruct candidates on effective campaign procedures and organization, and seeking to further party objectives of influencing policy and electing its adherents to office -- is required by statute to be performed by the Committee; instead, all of the "internal party decisions" are made by the Committee because of delegations of authority from the party's Convention itself. As far as the statutory scheme is concerned, there is no reason why the Convention -- instead of attempting to increase the size of the State Committee by providing for the election of members in addition to those specified by the statute -- could not create an entirely new separate committee or one, for example, composed of members of the State Committee and such additional membership as might be desired to perform the political functions now performed by the State Committee. Thus, there can be no complaint that the party's right to govern itself has been substantially burdened by statute when the source of the complaint is the party's own decision to confer critical authority on the State Committee. Pp. 442 U. S. 195-199.

90 Wash.2d 298, 582 P.2d 487, affirmed.

STEVENS, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which all other Members joined, except POWELL, J., who took no part in the consideration or decision of the case.

Page 442 U. S. 192

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