Right to travel Scotus rulings.

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U.S. Supreme Court says No License Necessary
To Drive Automobile On Public Highways/Streets
No License Is Necessary
Copy and Share Freely
"The right of a citizen to travel upon the public highways and to transport his property thereon, by horse
drawn carriage, wagon, or
automobile, is not a mere privilege which may be permitted or prohibited at
will, but a common right which he has under his right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Under
this constitutional guaranty one may, therefore, under normal conditions, travel at his inclination along the
public highways or in public places, and while conducting himself in an orderly and decent manner, neither
interfering with nor disturbing another's rights, he will be protected, not only in his person, but in his safe

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 Thompson v.Smith, 154 SE 579, 11 American Jurisprudence, Constitutional Law, section 329, page 1135
"The right of the Citizen to travel upon the public highways and to transport his property thereon,
in the ordinary course of life and business, is a common right which he has under the right to enjoy
life and liberty, to acquire and possess property, and to pursue happiness and safety. It includes the
right, in so doing, to use the ordinary and usual conveyances of the day, and under the existing
modes of travel, includes the right to drive a horse drawn carriage or wagon thereon or to operate
an automobile thereon, for the usual and ordinary purpose of life and business."
-Thompson vs. Smith, supra.;
Teche Lines vs. Danforth, Miss., 12 S.2d 784
"... the right of the citizen to drive on a public street with freedom from police interference... is a
fundamental constitutional right"
-White, 97 Cal.App.3d.141, 158 Cal.Rptr. 562, 566-67 (1979)
“citizens have a right to drive upon the public streets of the District of Columbia or any other city
absent a constitutionally sound reason for limiting their access.”
Caneisha Mills v. D.C. 2009
“The use of the automobile as a necessary adjunct to the earning of a livelihood in modern life
requires us in the interest of realism to conclude that the RIGHT to use an automobile on the
public highways partakes of the nature of a liberty within the meaning of the Constitutional
guarantees. . .”
Berberian v. Lussier (1958) 139 A2d 869,
872, See also: Schecter v. Killingsworth, 380 P.2d 136, 140; 93 Ariz. 273 (1963).
“The right to operate a motor vehicle [an automobile] upon the public streets and highways is not a
mere privilege. It is a right of liberty, the enjoyment of which is protected by the guarantees of the
federal and state constitutions.”
Adams v. City of Pocatello, 416 P.2d 46, 48; 91 Idaho 99
“A traveler has an equal right to employ an automobile as a means of transportation and to occupy the public
highways with other vehicles in common use.”
Campbell v. Walker, 78 Atl. 601, 603, 2 Boyce (Del.) 41.
“The owner of an automobile has the
same right as the owner of other vehicles to use the highway,* * * A
traveler on foot has the same right to the use of the public highways as an automobile or any other vehicle.”
Simeone v. Lindsay, 65 Atl. 778, 779; Hannigan v. Wright, 63 Atl. 234, 236.
"The RIGHT of the citizen to DRIVE on the public street with freedom from police interference,
unless he is engaged in suspicious conduct associated in some manner with criminality is a
FUNDAMENTAL CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT which must be protected by the courts."
People v. Horton
14 Cal. App. 3rd 667 (1971)
“The right to make use of an
automobile as a vehicle of travel long the highways of the state, is no longer
an open question. The owners thereof have the
same rights in the roads and streets as the drivers of horses
or those riding a bicycle or traveling in some other vehicle.”
House v. Cramer, 112 N.W. 3; 134 Iowa 374; Farnsworth v. Tampa Electric Co. 57 So.
233, 237, 62 Fla. 166.
“The automobile may be used with safety to others users of the highway, and in its proper use upon
the highways there is an equal right with the users of other vehicles properly upon the highways.
The law recognizes such right of use upon general principles.
Brinkman v Pacholike, 84 N.E. 762, 764, 41 Ind. App. 662, 666.
“The law does not denounce
motor carriages
, as such, on public ways. They have an equal right with other vehicles in
common use to occupy the streets and roads. It is improper to say that the driver of the horse has rights in the roads
superior to the driver of the automobile
. Both have the right to use the easement.”
Indiana Springs Co. v. Brown, 165 Ind. 465, 468.
U.S. Supreme Court says No License Necessary
To Drive Automobile On Public Highways/Streets
No License Is Necessary
Copy and Share Freely
“A highway is a public way open and free to any one who has occasion to pass along it on foot or
with any kind of vehicle.”
Schlesinger v. City of Atlanta, 129 S.E. 861, 867, 161 Ga. 148, 159; Holland v. Shackelford, 137 S.E. 2d 298, 304, 220 Ga.
104; Stavola v. Palmer, 73 A.2d 831, 838, 136 Conn. 670
“There can be no question of the right of automobile owners to occupy and use the public streets of
cities, or highways in the rural districts.”
Liebrecht v. Crandall, 126 N.W. 69, 110 Minn. 454, 456
"The word ‘automobile’ connotes a pleasure vehicle designed for the transportation of persons on
-American Mutual Liability Ins. Co., vs. Chaput, 60 A.2d 118, 120; 95 NH 200
Motor Vehicle
: 18 USC Part 1 Chapter 2 section 31 definitions:
"(6) Motor vehicle. - The term "motor vehicle"
means every description of carriage or other contrivance
propelled or drawn by mechanical power
and used for commercial purposes on the highways..."
10) The term "used for
commercial purposes" means the carriage of persons or property for any fare, fee, rate, charge or other consideration, or directly or indirectly in connection with any
business, or other undertaking intended for profit.
"A motor vehicle or automobile for hire is a motor vehicle, other than an automobile stage, used for the
transportation of persons for which remuneration is received."
-International Motor Transit Co. vs. Seattle, 251 P. 120
The term ‘motor vehicle’ is different and broader than the word ‘automobile.’"
-City of Dayton vs. DeBrosse, 23
NE.2d 647, 650; 62 Ohio App. 232
"Thus self-driven vehicles are classified according to the use to which they are put rather than
according to the means by which they are propelled"
- Ex Parte Hoffert, 148 NW 20
"The Supreme Court, in Arthur v. Morgan,
112 U.S. 495, 5 S.Ct. 241, 28 L.Ed. 825,
held that carriages
were properly classified as household effects, and we see no reason that
automobiles should not be similarly disposed of."
Hillhouse v United States, 152 F. 163, 164 (2nd Cir. 1907).
"...a citizen has the right to travel upon the public highways and to transport his property thereon..."
State vs. Johnson, 243 P. 1073; Cummins vs. Homes, 155 P. 171; Packard vs. Banton, 44 S.Ct. 256; Hadfield vs. Lundin, 98 Wash 516,
Willis vs. Buck, 263 P.
l 982;
Barney vs. Board of Railroad Commissioners, 17 P.2d 82
"The use of the highways for the purpose of travel and transportation is not a mere privilege, but a
common and fundamental Right of which the public and the individual cannot be
rightfully deprived."
Chicago Motor Coach vs. Chicago, 169 NE 22; Ligare vs. Chicago, 28 NE 934; Boon vs. Clark, 214 SSW 607; 25 Am.Jur. (1st)
Highways Sect.163
"the right of the Citizen to travel upon the highway and to transport his property thereon in the
ordinary course of life and business... is the usual and ordinary right of the Citizen, a right
common to all."
- Ex Parte Dickey, (Dickey vs. Davis), 85 SE 781
“Every Citizen has an unalienable RIGHT to make use of the public highways of the state; every
Citizen has full freedom to travel from place to place in the enjoyment of life and liberty.”
People v.
Nothaus, 147 Colo. 210.
"No State government entity has the power to allow or deny passage on the highways, byways, nor
waterways... transporting his vehicles and personal property for either recreation or business, but by
being subject only to local regulation i.e., safety, caution, traffic lights, speed limits, etc. Travel is
not a privilege requiring licensing, vehicle registration, or forced insurances."
Chicago Coach Co. v. City
of Chicago, 337 Ill. 200, 169 N.E. 22.
"Traffic infractions are not a crime."
People v. Battle
"Persons faced with an unconstitutional licensing law which purports to require a license as a
prerequisite to exercise of right... may ignore the law and engage with impunity in exercise of
such right."
Shuttlesworth v. Birmingham 394 U.S. 147 (1969).
U.S. Supreme Court says No License Necessary To Drive Automobile On Public Highways/Streets
No License Is Necessary
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"The word 'operator' shall not include any person who solely transports his own property
and who transports no persons or property for hire or compensation."
Statutes at Large California Chapter
412 p.83
"Highways are for the use of the traveling public, and all have the right to use them in a reasonable
and proper manner; the use thereof is an inalienable right of every citizen."
Escobedo v. State 35 C2d 870 in 8 Cal Jur
3d p.27
“RIGHT -- A legal RIGHT, a constitutional RIGHT means a RIGHT protected by the law, by the
constitution, but government does not create the idea of RIGHT or original RIGHTS; it
acknowledges them. . . “
Bouvier's Law Dictionary, 1914, p. 2961.
“Those who have the right to do something cannot be licensed for what they already have
right to do as such license would be meaningless.”
City of Chicago v Collins 51 NE 907, 910.
“A license means leave to do a thing which the licensor could prevent.”
Blatz Brewing Co. v. Collins, 160
P.2d 37, 39; 69 Cal. A. 2d 639.
“The object of a license is to confer a right or power, which does not exist without it.”
Payne v.
Massey (19__) 196 SW 2nd 493, 145 Tex 273.
“The court makes it clear that a license relates to qualifications to engage in profession, business,
trade or calling; thus, when merely traveling without compensation or profit, outside of business
enterprise or adventure with the corporate state, no license is required of the natural individual
traveling for personal business, pleasure and transportation.” Wingfield v. Fielder 2d Ca. 3d 213
“If [state] officials construe a vague statute unconstitutionally, the citizen may take them at their word, and act on the
assumption that the statute is void.”
- Shuttlesworth v. Birmingham 394 U.S. 147 (1969).
"With regard particularly to the U.S. Constitution, it is elementary that a
Right secured or protected by that document cannot be overthrown or impaired
by any state police authority." Donnolly vs. Union Sewer Pipe Co., 184 US
540; Lafarier vs. Grand Trunk R.R. Co., 24 A. 848; O'Neil vs. Providence
Amusement Co., 108 A. 887.
"The right to travel (called the right of free ingress to other states, and egress from them) is so fundamental that it
appears in the Articles of Confederation, which governed our society before the Constitutio
n." (Paul v. Virginia).
"[T]he right to travel freely from State to State ... is a right broadly assertable against private interference as well as
governmental action. Like the right of association, it is a virtually unconditional personal right, guaranteed
by the
Constitution to us
(U.S. Supreme Court, Shapiro v. Thompson).
EDGERTON, Chief Judge: “Iron curtains have no place in a free world. ...'
Undoubtedly the
right of locomotion, the
right to remove from one place to another according to inclination, is an attribute of personal liberty, and the right,
ordinarily, of free transit from or through the territory of any State is a right
secured by the Constitution.'
Williams v. Fears,
179 U.S. 270, 274, 21 S.Ct. 128, 45 L.Ed. 186.
“Our nation has thrived on the principle that, outside areas of plainly harmful conduct, every American is left to shape
his own life as he thinks best, do what he pleases,
go where he pleases.”
Id., at 197. Kent vs. Dulles see Vestal, Freedom of Movement, 41
Iowa L.Rev. 6, 13—14.
“The validity of restrictions on the freedom of movement of particular individuals, both substantively and procedurally,
is precisely the sort of matter that is the peculiar domain of the courts.”
Comment, 61 Yale L.J. at page 187
“a person detained for an investigatory stop can be questioned but is “not obliged to answer, answers may not be compelled,
and refusal to answer furnishes no basis fo
r an arrest.”
Justice White, Hiibel
“Automobiles have the right to use the highways of the State on an equal footing with other vehicles.
Cumberland Telephone. & Telegraph Co. v Yeiser
141 Kentucy 15.
“Each citizen has the absolute right
to choose for himself the mode of conveyance he desires, whether it be
by wagon or carriage, by horse, motor or electric car, or by bicycle, or astride of a horse, subject to the sole
condition that he will observe all those requirements that are known as
the law of the road.”
Swift v City of Topeka, 43
U.S. Supreme Court says No License Necessary To Drive Automobile On Public Highways/Streets
No License Is Necessary
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Kansas 671, 674.
The Supreme Court said in
U.S. v Mersky
(1960) 361 U.S. 431: An administrative regulation, of course, is
not a "statute."
A traveler on foot has the same right to use of the public highway
as an automobile or any other vehicle.
Cecchi v. Lindsay
, 75 Atl. 376, 377, 1 Boyce (Del.) 185.
Automotive vehicles are lawful means of conveyance and have equal rights upon the streets with horses
and carriages. Chicago Coach Co. v. City of Chicago
, 337 Ill. 200, 205; See also:
Christy v. Elliot
, 216 Ill.
31; Ward v. Meredith
, 202 Ill. 66; Shinkle v. McCullough
, 116 Ky. 960; Butler v. Cabe
, 116 Ark. 26, 28-29.
are lawful vehicles and have equal rights on the highways with horses and carriages. Daily v.
Maxwell, 133 S.W. 351, 354. Matson v. Dawson
, 178 N.W. 2d 588, 591.
A farmer has the same right to the use of the highways of the state, whether on foot or in a
motor vehicle
as any other citizen.
Draffin v. Massey
, 92 S.E.2d 38, 42.
Persons may lawfully ride in automobiles, as they may lawfully ride on bicycles.
Doherty v. Ayer
, 83 N.E.
677, 197 Mass. 241, 246; Molway v. City of Chicago
, 88 N.E. 485, 486, 239 Ill. 486; Smiley v. East St.
Louis Ry. Co., 100 N.E. 157, 158.
"A soldier's personal automobile is part of his ‘household goods[.]’ U.S. v
Bomar, C.A.5(Tex.), 8 F.3d 226, 235" 19A Words and Phrases - Permanent Edition
(West) pocket part 94. "[I]t is a jury question whether ... an automobile ... is
a motor vehicle[.]" United States v Johnson, 718 F.2d 1317, 1324 (5th Cir.
Other right to use an automobile cases:
- WILLIAMS VS. FEARS, 179 U.S. 270, AT 274
- U.S. VS. GUEST, 383 U.S. 745, AT 757
-758 (1966)
-106 (1971)
- CALIFANO VS. TORRES, 435 U.S. 1, AT 4, note 6
- SHAPIRO VS. THOMPSON, 394 U.S. 618 (1969)
- CALIFANO VS. AZNAVORIAN, 439 U.S. 170, AT 176 (1978)
Look the above citations up in A
merican Jurisprudence.
Some citations may be paraphrased
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