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Judicial Review Overview

Judicial Review Overview

Judicial
review acquires its roots from all the way back to that of the presidential
election of 1800. It represents the Supreme Court’s authority to review cases
and decide on whether or not such laws are Constitutional. The advent of
judicial review stems back to the time in which John Adams had submitted defeat
at the hands of Thomas Jefferson. Despite this hit to the Federalist regime,
however, Adams proceeded with a stream of actions that he believed would ensure
some basis of Federalist power regardless of the change in the Presidency.

Due to a
delay in time in relation to when exactly Jefferson took office, Adams was able
to proceed without any immediate opposition. His appointment of justices became
known as the “midnight appointments,” since they seemed to have
happened overnight. Though they had all been approved by the Senate, one
additional step must be fulfilled for these appointments to have gone into
effect legally. These “commissions” must have been distributed to
those appointed in order for it to be achieved to its completion.

Delivery never occurred, however, as President
Jefferson finally took his place and ordered that the commissions not be sent
prior to the return of James Madison, who balanced both appointment as Chief
Justice of the Supreme Court as well as acting Secretary of State. With the
absence of such appointments, Adams’ men were unable to take up the various
offices set upon them as well as go forth with duties he had wished them to
begin. In addition, the Judiciary Act of 1801 was abolished and replaced by a
subsequent Judiciary Act of 1802, which reverted terms to follow in the
footsteps of the early Judiciary Act of 1789.

As a result,
Marbury, one of those individuals set to take up appointment as a Justice of
the Peace for the District of Columbia, decided to file a complaint with the
Supreme Court. This case came to be known as Marbury v. Madison. The basis of
the issue may be stemmed from the following specification. In order for a case
to be heard by the Supreme Court, the following must occur: filing with the
Supreme Court, filing with a lower Federal court and filing appeals upwards,
and filing in a State court and also appealing up. From these choices, then,
Marbury assumed the quickest option. However, such an option required the
existence of “original jurisdiction,” which the Supreme Court was not
stated as having at that moment in time. Due to this Marbury cited the Judiciary
Act of 1789, which stated that Congress had the ability to enable the Supreme
Court to acquire “original jurisdiction”.

The Supreme Court came to a final decision that
worked to appease all involved as much as its powers could. It ruled that
Marbury did possess the legal right to attain his commission, but stipulated
that it could not force Madison to convey it to him. In addition, Chief Justice
John Marshall stated that such a claim was unconstitutional since it granted
the Supreme Court the power that is not set forth within Article 3 of the
United States Constitution. This action represented the first time that the
Supreme Court had even possessed the authority to declare an Act unconstitutional,
and thus, make an Act from Congress void, thus also representative of the very
first judicial review.

Article 3

Article 3

The first three Articles of
the United States Constitution set up the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial
Branches of
Government
that comprise the structure of the United States governing body. Article III of
the Constitution deals specifically with the Judicial Branch of the United
States, providing for the general architecture of the judicial system.

Section 1 of Article III states that there should be a
sole high court, the Supreme Court, that shall have the vested judicial powers
of the United States. However, it also provide
s for
inferior courts to help with the function of the judicial system and to allow
for a better structure to delegate judicial power.

It is of worthy note that the Constitution does not
actually provide for an established number of judges to hold office in the
Supreme Court. Article III only requires that there be only one
Federal
court. However, the number of Supreme Court
Justices
would be established later through additional statu
tes,
setting the number at nine. There is one
Chief Justice and
eight
Associate Justices
appointed to the Supreme Court.
 

Federal Judiciary Act of 1789:

The Federal Judiciary Act of 1789 was the landmark
statute that was introduced in the first session of the United State Congress. The
Judiciary Act established the Unites States Federal Judicial Branch. Article
III of the United States Constitution states that one Supreme Court is to be
vested with the nation’s judicial powers. Initially, this provision was met
with dispute and opposition, for many feared that establishing all judicial
powers into a single court would leave the door wide open for tyranny. Many of
the opponents suggested that the Supreme Court powers be delegated among local
courts as well. However, Congress would establish the Supreme Court with the
intentions of having broader jurisdiction of the Federal power, which would
allow for enforcement of national laws at the State level.

The Act
would give the Supreme Court jurisdiction over all civil matters between
states, the states and the United States, and over matters dealing with
ambassadors and diplomatic officials. The Act would also state that there would
be six Supreme Court Justices, one being a Chief Justice and the other five
being Associate Justices.

The Judiciary Act would also create both the Office of Attorney General
and the United States Marshal’s Service that would serve each individual
judicial district also created by the Act. These judicial districts were
created in each of the eleven states that ratified the Constitution. Each State
would have one district, with the exception of Massachusetts and Virginia, each
of which would have two. The Judiciary Act of 1789 would also allow for the
power of the Supreme Court to issue writs of mandamus, but this would later be
declared unconstitutional in the landmark case of Marbury v. Madison.




What Comes To Mind When You Hear

What Comes To Mind When You Hear

When we
think of treason, what comes to mind is that of betrayal or a breach in the
pursuits of honor and righteousness. According to Article 3 of the United
States Constitution, treason is defined in relation to its occurrence against
the whole of the country.

Within the
Constitution, it is specified that treason is comprised of actions such as
imposing war against the country or abiding by enemy parties in terms of providing
assistance as well as support for them in any way possible. In direct
connection to this, conviction according to crimes of treason are specified to
not occur without the existence of at least 2 individual witnesses to the
aforementioned act of treason or the presentation of a clear confession before
the Supreme Court.

In terms of the taking away of property, this may
occur if convicted of treason. However, upon the individual’s death, the
aforementioned property must be reintegrated into the system of inheritance
once more. One such case that represents the first of which actually reexamined
a conviction in relation to treason was that of Cramer v. United States.

The
circumstances that comprised this case consisted of the individual, Cramer, who
was seen to have associated with two German men. These two men were later found
guilty of the goal of sabotage, which led to Cramer, himself, being taken in
and arrested due only to his association with them.

In a close
vote, the Supreme Court decided to overturn the jury’s decision. According to
one member of the Supreme Court, Cramer had not violated what was set forth in
the Constitution concerning the commitment of treason. There did not exist any
proof of Cramer actually conveying any type of assistance toward the two men,
which must be obvious. All that could be garnered by the prosecution is that of
their association.

This close decision concerning treason represented
the way in which the Supreme Court would operate in terms of hearing treason.
It seems that the Supreme Court may abide strictly by the wording provided by
the Constitution. In order to specify elements of treason according to the Supreme
Court even more, one must be cognizant of two such components: “wrongful
intent” and an “overt act.”

In reference
to wrongful intent, an individual will be found guilty of treason only if they
are found with the intent to move towards the planning of actions against the Government
structure as well as a destruction of its overall authority and power. When
concerning the overt act, however, one must be aware of the fact that the
“commission of some overt act to effect a treasonable purpose” also
signifies conviction in accordance with that of treason. When these two important
elements of treason are found to exist, individuals will most likely be subject
to a trial due to committing acts of treason as will be judged by the Supreme Court,
which reigns over such cases under the Constitution.

Marbury vs. Madison

Marbury vs. Madison

In 1803, Marbury v. Madison became an important case to the United States.  When Adams wanted Marbury to become the Justice of the Peace in the District of Columbia, Marbury did not acquire the proper documents in time and was prevented from fulfilling Adam’s request by the Secretary of the State, James Madison.
Problems began to arise during the Marbury v. Madison case where the Supreme Court had to question its power over Congress.  The Supreme Court wanted to answer questions about who decides who will win the case and if the Court has the authority to modify the terms of the Constitution.  One problem that may arise from judicial review is the fear that the Supreme Court will be able to overrule all other branches of Government when a decision is made.
During the trial, Marbury expressed his belief that the Constitution was only a base of laws that Congress could add to.  If there is a conflict between Congress and the Constitution, the Constitution’s laws will hold.
During the Marbury v. Madison case, questions arose that concerned Marbury’s rights to be a judge.   In the end, Marbury did not become Justice of the Peace in the District of Columbia.
Since the Marbury v. Madison case, many people have argued that Marshall (the judge during the case) was not sound in his argument against Marbury. Congress shall not supersede the Supreme Court.  Many believe that Marshall should not even have been the judge since he was still Secretary of the State when the paperwork was to be delivered to Marbury and it was Marshall’s brother who was to deliver it.

Know the Scope of Federal Judicial Power

Know the Scope of Federal Judicial Power

With all of the acts and laws in the Constitution, it can be mind-boggling for one to know what to think.  Throughout history, one major concern for people is the amount of Federal judiciary power that these laws create.  However, there has to be some kind of judicial system, otherwise our world would be total chaos.
Article 3 of the United States Constitution and the Federal Judiciary Act of 1789 are two pieces that state the power of the Supreme Court.  The Supreme Court (and those that fall under the Supreme Court) is allowed to hear cases and make decisions that are relevant to the Constitution.
One problem that may arise from such power is the fact that it is up to the Supreme Court to interpret the Constitution.  Marshall, the Chief Justice during the Marbury v. Madison case, felt that there were conflicts between Congress and the Constitution. The Federal Judiciary Act states that a judge has to uphold good behavior and failure to do so will result in impeachment.  On the other hand, as long as a judge upholds good behavior that judge can stay appointed to his/her chair as long as he/she chooses.  A Federal judge is appointed by the President, not by the people.
Our Founding Fathers realized quickly that though they wanted freedom, a method of power had to be established.  Sometimes people are ready to blame the system when it is not the system that went awry.  If the people within that system do not adhere to the Constitution, people will see the judiciary system as having too much power.

Understanding Constitutional Review

Understanding Constitutional Review

Following the landmark case of Marbury v. Madison, judicial review became an intricate and significant part of the Federal judiciary system. As a member of the Federal judiciary, the Supreme Court now maintains the authority and power over the judging of cases under the express interpretation and explicit guidance of the United States Constitution. Such a judicial review has enabled the viability of all aspects of law to be accountable if deemed unconstitutional.
Judicial review abides completely in accordance to the Constitution as the “supreme law of the land.” In such a way the Federal judiciary must ensure that no State or Federal law be in any violation of it. Despite its advent in the Supreme Court, judicial review has also been instituted in various other Federal courts as well as State courts.
In general, despite the unconstitutionality of a law or statute, a court may not possess the power of judiciary review without the existence of some type of case being pursued or controversy concerning it. In such a way, at least one side must be present with the position of legality in order to continue with such a lawsuit. So as to bypass cases, which could easily be judged in reference to areas other than that of the constitution, the Supreme Court came up with a number of rules or guidelines by which judicial reviews according to the Constitution may be enacted.
Cases that concern friendly suits may not seek out the Constitution for judgment. There is no need for such actions, as the non-adversarial nature of such a case may be handled by other means. The Court may also not assume questions of constitutionality prior to a pressing need being observed. Jumping towards such hasty actions present unnecessary uses of judicial review. In addition, the Court must not extend a rule concerning Constitutional law without the existence of equally distinct facts for which it may be adequately applied. If presented with two ways to approach a case, such as that of the Constitution versus the statutory law, the Court will always be expected to employ the latter as its basis for judgment.
In addition, when statutes are at question, courts must first render the structure of the statute as viable and lawful prior to taking any action toward judicial review in connection to the United States Constitution. This allows for such an action to be avoided until absolutely necessary.
A representation of the exercising of such rules is that which is exemplified by the amount of time that passed between the case of Marbury v. Madison and the next Constitutional reviewed case. It was not for about 50 years until another such case was heard in such accordance.
Judicial review allows for the Federal judiciary to exercise its authority in accordance with what is set forth by the Government, and therefore, goes forward with its interpretation according to various jurisdictions on its way to adequate rulings.

Understanding Debate of Judicial Review

Understanding Debate of Judicial Review

Upon
institution of judicial review and democracy, the Supreme Court had created a
precedence by which future cases were to be handled. Despite its existence for
the sake of an improved judicial system, much debate has occurred over the
years concerning its legitimacy as well as the role of the Supreme Court in
judicial review. This debate has created a specified divide when concerning the
Supreme Court.

One of the issues that has been brought up is the
fact that Supreme Court Justices appear to give too much respect to the
Legislature, even when certain laws seem unconstitutional. Many reside on the
aforementioned side of the debate, while still others feel that Supreme Court
Justices do well in giving legislation the benefit of the doubt when dealing
with their questioned constitutionality. These individuals believe that
decisions determining constitutionality must be heeded.

Such a
debate falls upon the power that Supreme Courts seem to possess within the
realm of judicial review and democracy. It is thought that such overwhelming
power to decide constitutionality may be, instead, limiting the contributing
authorities of other aspects of democracy. Some are quite concerned with the
amount of power one individual may have in terms judicial review.

Another area of debate within the venue of
judicial review and democracy is that which concerns the argument of
‘institutional dialogue’. This states that both courts and legislatures join
together in a conversation with the express purpose being to attain a balance
between that of both Constitutional standards as well as public codes of
procedure.

Although
this does create a strong basis by which support may be garnered for such
judicial review, it may also possess limits as well. Limits include that the
type of dialogue needed to be presented may be that which is actually
impossible in terms of realization. This is due to the fact that such
communication will have to have been so clear, calculated, and concise as to
ensure that both sides had participated in concurrence with each other, while
in pursuit of a just ruling.

In addition to this is that, in the opinion of
some groups, judicial review and democracy may not actually go hand in hand
with each other. An argument posed by some includes that of the connection
between political righteousness and that of democracy. If such a relationship
does exist, then it seems that the Legislature, and not courts, should actually
possess authority over final rulings and decisions. Therefore, the institution
of judicial review may be seen by some as a counteraction against democracy
since judges assume complete power in relation to rulings as well as decisions
to overturn decisions based on their own personal interpretation of what must
be deemed Constitutional.

The debate
remains as to whether or not judicial review actually does go against the realm
of democracy, but for as long as such a practice continues, arguments will
never subside as there will always be an unsatisfied party.

Federal Judiciary Act of 1789

Federal Judiciary Act of 1789

Though Article 3 of the Constitution made headway about establishing the judicial branch of the Government, it was still vague on how much power the Supreme Court would have over Congress. 
One aspect that the Judiciary Act of 1789 covered was the creation of levels of courts.  The Act also established circuit courts and district courts. 
With regard to district courts, the Judiciary Act of 1789 states that all of the 13 districts (the colonies were divided into 13 districts) shall have one district court and one district judge appointed.  In each section there are to be two courts and the powers of those courts are to be the Supreme Court and the district judge of that region. To preside over these courts, a Federal judge is appointed by the President in accordance with Article 3 of the Constitution. 
Another aspect of the Judiciary Act of 1789 is that Congress allowed people to represent themselves in court or appoint someone to represent them.  This is in contrast to before the Act where people could not represent themselves in a court of law.
The Judiciary Act of 1789 also established the office of the Attorney General.  The job of the Attorney General is to oversee legal affairs. At the time this Act was enforced, the main role of the Attorney General was to provide legal advice to the President.
Finally, the Act also establishes that if one of the parties is to expire before the end of the trial, the trial may continue.