The Case of Florence Flast v. Wilbur Cohen (Case Study Sample)
This sample paper focuses on a case that occured on March 12, 1968 ,when Florence Flast, supported by a group of taxpayers, filed a lawsuit to challenge the federal legislation that funded the procurement of secular learning materials to be used in religious schools. Flast claimed that the utilization of tax money to purchase such materials violated the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause. The appellant, Flast, filed a case to seek legal action of preventing Wilbur Cohen, the secretary of the Health and Education docket, from disbursing the approved funds to schools.source..
Case Brief: Flast v. Cohen
After the implementation of the "Elementary and Secondary Education Act" by Congress in 1965, the federal legislation issued funds to facilitate the purchase of various learning materials that included textbooks for US-based religious schools. Several years passed until March 12, 1968, when the case of Flast v. Cohen occurred. Florence Flast, supported by a group of taxpayers, filed a lawsuit to challenge the federal legislation that funded the procurement of secular learning materials to be used in religious schools. Flast claimed that the utilization of tax money to purchase such materials violated the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause. The appellant, Flast, filed a case to seek legal action of preventing Wilbur Cohen, the secretary of the Health and Education docket, from disbursing the approved funds to schools.
Did the petitioner, as a taxpayer, have Article III standing to challenge and sue the federal expenditure program constitutionally?
In determining the issue of standing when challenging the utilization of federal funds, the taxpayer should prove that the legislation that was involved in the exploitation of taxpayers' money is unconstitutional and that the enforcement of the Act by the legislation inflicted direct injury to the petitioner. The complainant should have evidence indicating the infliction of direct suffering. However, an American taxpayer is entitled to dictate and know where tax money is utilized and how it is used. Therefore, when ruling on standing, it is necessary and appropriate to consider the substantive issues to determine whether a logical nexus is present between the claim sought to be adjudicated and the status asserted.
In this case, the Federal government claimed that there was a limitation for taxpayers to sue the government according to the provisions of Article III. In its argument, the federal government stated that no taxpayer was allowed to sue the government for disagreements arising between both parties concerning public expenditures. As a result, the court’s interpretation of this argument was that “standing should be denied” to Flast and the other taxpayers’ standing questions since this was a political question. During the proceedings of the case, Justice Warren established that the government’s argument was inappropriate since the question of standing is definitive only to a party's appropriateness. Therefore, standing principles and political questions should not be combined as the government's argument posited. Consequently, a taxpayer may be granted or denied standing because Article III does not obligate complete restriction. In this case, if other traditional standing requirements are evaluated and the requirements are met, the taxpayer plaintiff might be granted standing.
Florence Flast and the other taxpayers posited that Congress had dishonored the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. Thus, they attested constitutional violation in a satisfactory chance, seeking to be given standing. Through the utilization of Frothingham’s case, the court ruled that the grievances presented were not general; rather, they were substantial for the summoning of federal jurisdiction and issuing a standing order (Epstein and Walker, 109). The court of law invo
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