chapter 14 summary

chapter 14 summary - Chapter XIV Summary Courts National...

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Courts National Judicial Supremacy: The Role of the Courts in American Government American courts shape policies that form the heart of American democracy. The courts can undo the work of representative institutions. This thwarts democratic theory, which argues that the majority should rule. Conferral of Power Decision on the Federal Courts The Constitution established “one Supreme Court” but left it to Congress to structure the federal judiciary. Judicial review led to the ascendancy of the Supreme Court. Components of judicial review are: The power of the courts to declare national, state, and local law invalid if they violate the Constitution Components of Judicial Review The power of the courts to declare national, state, and local law invalid if they violate the Constitution The supremacy of national laws or treaties when they conflict with state and local laws The role of the Supreme Court as the final authority on the meaning of the Constitution. Hamilton anticipated the power of judicial review and discussed it in Federalist No. 78. Organization The state courts: Each state (and the District of Columbia) has its own court system. No two are alike. Co-exist with the federal court system. Individuals fall under the jurisdiction of both. Handle and resolve vast majority of legal disputes. Court fundamentals Criminal cases involve a crime or a violation of a public order. Civil cases involve a private dispute arising from such matters as accidents, contractual obligations, and divorce. Common or Judge-Made laws involve legal precedents derived from previous judicial decisions. The federal courts The federal courts are like a pyramid: the Supreme Court is at the apex, the U.S. Courts of Appeals occupy the middle, and the U.S. District Courts serve as the base. There are ninety-four federal district courts and nearly 650 full-time district judges The Apex: The Supreme Court The mottos inscribed on the Supreme Court building capture the Court’s difficult task: providing equal justice under law while making justice the guardian of liberty . The work of the Court is determined by access. Original jurisdiction is the authority of a court to hear a case before any other court does. Appellate jurisdiction is the authority of a court to hear cases that have been tried, decided, or reexamined in other courts. The Rule of Four is an unwritten rule that requires at least four justices to agree that a case warrants consideration before it is reviewed by the Supreme Court. Once the Court grants review, attorneys submit written arguments (briefs). Justices decide how to vote on a case by one of two approaches:
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chapter 14 summary - Chapter XIV Summary Courts National...

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