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The Supreme Court
Transcript of The Supreme Court
change government? Supreme Court Cases Judicial Activism
Judicial Restraint Video...
Marbury v. Madison McCulloch v. Maryland How can a case
get to the Supreme Court? How the Court Operates When a decision has been made There are 9 Supreme Court Justices. They are Appointed by the President
and Confirmed by Congress. They
serve on the bench for the rest of their lives. Unity for the whole country is necessary.
Having justices that are separate from the rest of government helps insure the checks and balances.
The Court can apply and interpret laws as needed which further exemplifies Checks and balances. They Have life tenure in order to insulate them from politics and protect them from dismissal just for deciding an unpopular ruling. They are insulated meaning...
They do not have a constituent base
They do not follow party approval
They do not follow popular opinion or cultural norms The court is in place to decide on cases that limit or expand either the government or the rights of the individual. Oral Arguements:
Presentations by lawyers of
both sides --limited to 30 minutes
Happen in 2 week intervals from October to early May on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and sometimes Thursdays at 10:00 Briefs:
Written documents filed with the Court before the oral arguments begin.
many run hundreds of pages because they include a detailed argument for one side of a case and may even include facts and relevant cases. An opinion is given. The majority opinion is officially called the "Opinion of the Court".
It announces the main opinion of the court and gives reasoning behind it. Dissenting Opinion -
written by judges that go against the majority vote.
Providing these allows the minority voice to be heard, a statement to be studied in later years and cases, and establishes a record for why the Court was divided.
A Concurring Opinion adds emphasis to the majority opinion's side. Step 1: A case is filed in a District Court Step 2: The case is appealed to a
Federal Court of appeals Step 3: The Court allows the lower ruling to stand
OR The court sends it back for reconsideration
OR They agree to hear the case - Writ of Certiorari -
"to be more certain"
This is an order by the Court directing a lower court to send up a case for review. Either party can petition the Supreme Court to issue a writ.
They are usually granted in limited number ; usually because of a Constitutional question or a serious problem with the interpretation of a statute. Certificates:
These are requests to the Court from lower courts to certify the answer to a specific question that is unclear to them Most cases that reach the Court come from State Supreme Courts and the Federal Courts of Appeals. The Supreme Court is the end of the road. It is the High court because it's the last court where federal questions can be decided. With this case, the Court established the Implied Powers of Congress through the Necessary and Proper Clause This court case established Judicial Review.
This Power is exercised by most federal and state Courts Judicial Review allows the Courts to decide upon the Constitutionality of an act of government, making them the final authority. In the case, Madison had tried to appoint his "midnight justices" but the next day when Jefferson took office he ordered that their commissions were not to be delivered.
Marbury claimed that under the Judiciary Act of 1789, the courts could force delivery.
BUT - The court quoted the Constitution that they did not have original jurisdiction because the case did not involve an Ambassador or a State party. Does the Supreme Court ever use a lower court's precendent?