Girouard v. United States 328 U.S. 61 (1946)

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GIROUARD v. UNITED STATES 328 U.S. 61 (1946)

An applicant for United States citizenship declared that he could take the oath of allegiance ("support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States against all enemies …") only with the reservation that he would not serve in the military in a combatant role.

The Court, speaking through Justice william o. douglas, held that despite united states v. schwimmer (1929), United States v. MacIntosh (1931), and United States v. Bland (1931), Girouard met the requirements for naturalization. Justice Douglas argued that Congress had not specifically insisted upon willingness to perform combatant service. Chief Justice harlan f. stone dissented, joined by Justices stanley f. reed and felix frankfurter.

This case established the eligibility of conscientious objectors to be naturalized as citizens of the United States.

Richard E. Morgan