National Constitution CenterCenturies of Citizenship: A Constitutional Timeline Exhibit
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1931-1946: We meet crisis in the Depression, and again in World War II

February 3, 1941
Another New Deal win in Court: Congress can set wages and hours

WPA workers

Forty cents an hour. Forty hours a week.

Can Congress set those minimum wages and maximum hours for workers across the nation? A unanimous Supreme Court says “yes”…because the goods those workers produce might go into interstate commerce.

In today’s Darby case, the Court reversed an old decision, and an old tradition of leaving such issues up to the states. They say the 10th Amendment—long used to keep the federal government out of workplace issues—doesn’t limit federal power at all.

It’s the latest win in a string of courtroom victories for the New Deal.

Read about it in the New York times

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