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Exclusion Of Noncitizens From Federal Jobs Struck Down


In Hampton v. Mow Sun Wong, the U.S. Supreme Court rules that a Civil Service Commission rule that barred noncitizens, including resident aliens (foreigners who live here), from holding civil service jobs violates the Fifth Amendment’s due process clause. Although recognizing that national interests may justify a citizenship requirement for certain jobs, the Court finds that the Civil Service Commission does not have the authority to deprive an entire class of individuals – resident aliens – from making a living. The Court relies in part on earlier decisions that found that state rules depriving resident aliens from working for state government violated the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause.