KILBOURN VS. THOMPSON
\kɪlbˈɔːn vˌiːˈɛs], \kɪlbˈɔːn vˌiːˈɛs], \k_ɪ_l_b_ˈɔː_n v_ˌiː__ˈɛ_s]\
Definitions of KILBOURN VS. THOMPSON
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an important case decided by the U. S. Supreme Court in 1880. Kilbourn was summoned as a witness before the House of Representatives of the United States in 1876, and required to answer questions and produce certain papers. This he refused to do, and accordingly Thompson, sergeant-at-arms of the House, was ordered to arrest and imprison him for forty-five days in the common jail of the District of Columbia. He was released on a writ of habeas corpus, and brought suit before the Supreme Court against Thompson and certain Congressmen on the plea of illegal imprisonment. The court decided that the House might punish its own members for disorderly conduct, but that the Constitution did not invest either House with a general power of punishment for contempt.
By John Franklin Jameson