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Unit 4C: Judicial Branch
Transcript of Unit 4C: Judicial Branch
Unit 4C - Judicial Branch
Article ____ of the US Constitution and Article ____ of the NC Constitution set up the Judicial Branch. The main role of the judicial branch is to ___________ laws. The judicial branch is made up of _____________________. The executive branch checks the judicial branch because the ________________________________ and the legislative branch checks the judicial branch because __________________________ ______________________________________. The judicial branch can check the executive branch by _________________________________ and it can check the legislative branch by _____________________________________. We know that Article VI says that the Constitution is ________________, so therefore judges base their decision on what the Constitution says. Judges often look back at previous decisions, called ______________ to rule on a case. Federal judges get their job when they are appointed by the _____________ and approved by the _________; however, state judges are _____________.
Yes, you must write out the paragraph!
Appointed by the President, Senate approved
President ask opinion of senators from the judge's home state
At least 21 years old
Able to practice law
Lives in district
Elected by people, 8 year term limit
Benefits of FEDERAL judges
1. Serve for life*
2. Cannot get a pay cut
*They can be impeached.
is this the case?
So that judges can decide cases without influence from outside politics/media.
authority to give orders in a certain area
have the authority to hear a case for the 1st time
*District courts & sometimes the Supreme Court have this.
Not an OJ
have the authority to review a case in order to decide if law was applied fairly
*Appeals courts & sometimes the Supreme Court have this.
"The judicial power of the United States, shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The judges, both of the supreme and inferior courts, shall hold their offices during good behaviour, and shall, at stated times, receive for their services, a compensation, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office."
US Constitution Article III
How many courts are set up in the Constitution?
What does it say about judges?
Federal Courts SAD Cake
for federal cases
94 total with at least 1 for each state
Cases heard by
90% of all federal cases start here
court that hear cases and reach verdicts (decide guilty/not guilty)
Marshall – protect jurors, arrest criminals, serve subpoenas, collect fines
Grand Jury in Preliminary Hearing - decides if there is enough evidence to try case
District Attorney – Prosecutes people accused of breaking federal laws (a lawyer)
Attorney/Public Attorney - represents defendant
Judge – issues the sentence
Jury – (usually 12 citizens) that decide guilt/innocence
AKA Appellate Courts, Circuit Courts, Court of Appeals
Has appellate jurisdiction
Appeal - lawyer thinks law was applied incorrectly, appeals for review of lower court's decision
3 judge panel (not a jury) makes decision to:
Remand - send back to lower court
1. How many circuits are there (don't forget DC)?
2. In which circuit is NC?
3. Which circuit contains the most states? How many states does it serve?
Has original jurisdiction in special cases
US Military Court of Appeals
US Tax Court
US Court of International Trade
US Court of Federal Claims
1 chief justice + 8 associate = 9 justices
Justices are appointed by the President & approved by Senate
Original Jurisdiction only in 2 situations:
Case involving foreign diplomats
Case between states
Appellate Jurisdiction when Constitutional issues
Supreme Court Building
US Capitol (Congress)
White House (President)
"Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the Supreme Court of the United States shall hereafter consist of the Chief Justice of the United States and eight associate justices, any six of whom shall constitute a quorum; and for the purposes of this act there shall be appointed an additional associate justice of said court."
Judiciary Act of 1869
According to Article III, what does SCOTUS look like?
According to the Judiciary Act of 1789, what does SCOTUS look like?
"That the supreme court of the United States shall consist of a chief justice and five associate justices, any four of whom shall be a quorum...That the United States shall be, and they hereby are divided into thirteen districts....That there be a court called a District Court, in each of the afore mentioned districts, to consist of one judge, who shall reside in the district for which he is appointed, and shall be called a District Judge..."
Judiciary Act of 1789
Congress immediately passes the first Judiciary Act...
1. How many SCOTUS justices?
2. How many district courts & judges?
Remember, _____________ can set the # of judges/courts.
Judiciary Act of 1789: Court size 6
Judiciary Act of 1801: Court size, 5
Repeal Act of 1802: Court size, 6
Seventh Circuit Act of 1807: Court size, 7
Judiciary Act of 1837: Court size, 9
Tenth Circuit Act of 1863: Court size, 10
Judicial Circuit Act of 1866: Court size, 7
Habeas Corpus Act of 1867: Court size, 8
Judiciary Act of 1869: Court size, 9
Why do you think we have left it at 9 judges?
Why do you think they've left it at 9 justices?
How many judges are on the Supreme Court? What is a quorum?
Why do you think we have this many judges?
1. Federal Judges qualifications? Term length?
2. State Judges qualifications? Term length?
3. What's the difference between appellate & original jurisdiction?
4.How does federalism relate to the judicial system? Give an example of federalism in the judicial system.
Draw checks and balances as related to the Judicial Branch.
NC Constitution, Article IV
....Justices of the Supreme Court, Judges of the Court of Appeals, and regular Judges of the Superior Court shall be elected by the qualified voters and shall hold office for terms of eight years and until their successors are elected and qualified. Justices of the Supreme Court and Judges of the Court of Appeals shall be elected by the qualified voters of the State......The Supreme Court shall consist of a Chief Justice and six Associate Justices, but the General Assembly may increase the number of Associate Justices to not more than eight.
Analyze this excerpt.
Who elects NC judges?
How many people are on the NC Supreme Court?
State Court SASD Cake
Has original jurisdiction for misdemeanors & civil suits less than $10,000
Jury decides guilty/innocence
Judge issues sentence
Has original jurisdiction for felonies and civil cases $10,000 or more
Jury decides guilty/innocence
Judge issues sentence
aka NC Appellate Courts, Circuit Courts
Has appellate jurisdiction
3 judge panel makes decision to keep, remand, overturn
1 chief justice and 6 associate justices = 7 justices, no jury
Judges are elected for 8 year terms, no term limits
Appellate jurisdiction only
Has final say on NC Constitution issues
Hears more cases
Hears criminal & civil cases
Hears cases dealing w/ state issues
Hears cases dealing w/ federal issues
Hears less cases
Review: What is jurisdiction? What is concurrent?
Cases can only start at state OR federal level
Cases can only start at EITHER state or federal level (both have jurisdiction)
1. Explain this graphic.
2. What type of jurisdiction does a court have when they try the case for the 1st time?
3. The 2nd time?
1. Differentiate between original and appellate jurisdiction. Give an example of each.
2. Differentiate between exclusive and concurrent jurisdiction. Give an example of each.
3. Draw a venn diagram comparing and contrasting state and federal courts.
2 Main Kinds of Cases
Someone has violated a law. A crime has been committed.
Give 3 examples of a criminal case
Prosecutor v. Defendant
Cases between two parties.
No crime has been committed.
Give 3 examples of a civil case.
Plaintiff v. Defendant
6. Case could be appealed again to the Supreme Court
What happens when you go to court?
1. Cases start at district level
2. Jury rules guilty/not guilty.
3. Judge issues sentencing.
4. Lawyers can appeal.
5. Appeals Court decides to remand, overturn, or keep district decision.
If a case goes to SCOTUS, what happens?
1. SCOTUS selects case for docket and reviews lawyer briefs
2. Oral arguments take place in which justices ask questions
3. Justices conference and vote - majority wins
4. Decisions are written and released to the public
Concurring decision (agree, but for different reason)
Justices base their decision on the Constitution, not politics, so they consider:
Stare Decisis - "Let the decision stand"
How do they decide?
Analyze this cartoon. What is the cartoonist implying?
Analyze this cartoon. What is the cartoonist implying?
Supreme Court Cases
1. How does a case reach the Supreme Court?
2. Identify the parts of the cartoon above. What is the cartoonist implying?
National Supremacy Cases
First Amendment Cases
Student Rights Cases
Civil Rights Cases
Rights of the Accused
What document says the federal government is supreme?
Marbury v. Madison (1803)
Background: Marbury was appointed as a US Judge by President Adams during his last days in office. President Jefferson refused to give Marbury his position.
Decision: Marbury does not get appointment, SCOTUS can declare a law/action unconstitutional =
McCulloch v. Maryland (1819)
Background: McCulloch, a bank cashier, refused to pay a tax placed on the federal bank by the State of Maryland
Decision: Allowed Congress to create a bank (implied powers) and said states cannot tax the national gov't
Necessary & Proper Clause
Gibbons v. Ogden (1824)
Background: Gibbons (had federal permission) questioned Ogden’s state charter to run a ferry.
Decision: Federal government is supreme, Congress has power to regulate commerce
Commerce Clause - Congress can regulate trade
US v. Nixon (1974)
Background: President Nixon refused to give up tapes revealing his role in a crime, claimed “EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE”
Decision: The president can't abuse his power of executive privilege to cover or alter a criminal investigation *Nixon was forced to give up tapes
What is a privilege?
SCOTUS cases that decided if individual liberties & rights were violated
What are Civil Rights?
Plessy v. Ferguson (1896)
Background: Plessy was 1/8 black, bought a white train ticket, refused to move to black train, was arrested
Decision: Segregation laws are Constitutional as long as they are
“Separate but Equal”
But what does that mean?
Brown v. Board of Education (1954)
Background: Mr. Brown demanded his daughter be allowed in a white school in order to receive a better education
Decision: Segregation is unconstitutional
“separate but NOT equal”
Swann v. Charlotte Mecklenburg (1971)
Background: Swann’s child was be bussed across town for school in order integrate the school/ keep a racial balance
Decision: Busing is constitutional if used to achieve racial integration of schools
14th Amendment - Equality
De Facto Segregation - Segregation by choice or tradition
University of California v. Bakke (1978)
Background: Alan Bakke, a white male, was denied entrance into medical school so that the school could reach its black quotas, even though he was more qualified
Decision: Affirmative action is legal, BUT quotas to determine affirmative action are NOT constitutional
What are your 1st amendment rights?
Have your first amendment rights ever been violated? What does "separation of church and state" mean? The Establishment Clause?
Wallace v. Jaffree (1985)
Background: School mandated all students have a moment of silence for prayer.
Decision: Moment of silence for PRAYER is unconstitutional.
Engle v. Vitale (1962)
Background: Parents sued school over a prayer said every morning in a NY Public School. Is school prayer constitutional?
Decision: Students cannot be required to say a prayer in schools.
1st Amendment-Freedom of religion
*Separation of church and State
Texas v. Johnson (1984)
Background: Johnson burned a flag, protesting President Reagan, was arrested because of TX flag burning laws
Decision: Flag burning is a Constitutional form of protest
1st Amendment-Freedom of speech/expression
Nazi v. Skokie (1977)
Background: National Socialist Party wanted to march through the town of Skokie, IL, a Jewish community. Town didn't want them to.
Decision: Hate speech is legal.
Freedom of Expression, 1st amendment
Which amendments deal with people accused of crimes?
Mapp v. Ohio (1961)
Background: Mapp’s home was searched without a valid warrant, pornographic material was found. She was convicted under Ohio’s porn laws.
Decision: Created EXCLUSIONARY RULE, evidence found in an illegal search can't be used against a suspect.
4th Amendment - Search and seizure
Exclusionary Rule - evidence found during an illegal search can not be used in court
Gideon v. Wainwright (1963)
Background: Gideon was found outside a pool hall, accused of robbing it, he couldn't afford lawyer, and was sentenced to 5 yrs in prison. Should you have a lawyer?
Decision: Everyone is granted the right to a lawyer in ALL cases. If you cannot afford one, court must appoint one.
6th Amendment - right to an attorney(lawyer)
Miranda v. Arizona (1966)
Background: Miranda, an immigrant was arrested & convicted of rape & murder, without knowing the legal protection granted to him.
Decision: All suspects should be informed of their rights upon being arrested *Miranda Rights*
“you have the right to remain silent……”
In re Gault (1967)
Background: Lady reported 15 yr old neighbor prank called her, police arrested and questioned 15 yr old w/o parent.
Decision: Parents must be present/ notified of juvenile arrests, and
still applies in juvenile cases
Furman v. Georgia (1972)
Background: Furman broke into a home & accidentally killed the homeowner. Given death penalty.
Decision: Death penalty for accidental murder is cruel & unusual.
*More black males received death penalty in GA than anyone else.
Gregg v. Georgia (1976)
Background: Gregg violently murdered 2 men after they picked him up hitchhiking. Given death penalty.
Decision: Death penalty was NOT cruel & unusual punishment b/c he intended to kill them.
What does exclusive mean?
Should students have rights in school? Should there be limits on what students can bring to school? Say in school?
Tinker v. Des Moines (1969)
Background: John & Mary Beth Tinker wanted to protest Vietnam War by wearing armbands, principal said no.
Decision: Students can protest as long as it is not disruptive to the school environment.
NJ v. TLO (1985)
Background: TLO was caught smoking in the bathroom, principal asked to search bag, TLO refused, said she needed warrant, principal searched anyway.
Decision: Principal does NOT need a warrant if it deals with school security
Bethel v. Fraser (1986)
Background: Fraser made a vulgar speech to student body after he was told not to, he's suspended 3 days, but says he has freedom of speech
Decision: Students are limited in speech, including "sexually vulgar" terms.
Let's see how you do.....
Small Claims Court
Civil cases where the amount is less than $5,000
Civil or criminal cases dealing with family issues
Landmark Court Case Card Project
Due Monday, March 16th