The party that brings a complaint in court is called the ______, and the one against whom the complaint is brought is called the ______.
A. defendant; plaintiff
B. plaintiff; precedent
C. plaintiff; defendant
D. litigator; juror
E. defendant; litigator
Prior cases whose principles are used by judges to decide current cases are called
A. public law.
B. en blanc decisions.
D. common law.
E. ex post facto cases.
The doctrine of ______ requires courts to follow authoritative prior decisions when ruling on a case.
A. stare decisis
B. habeas corpus
C. lex talions
D. ex post facto
E. a priori
When a case is resolved through a negotiated agreement before a full trial is completed, it is called
A. a misdemeanor.
B. a plea bargain.
C. taking the Fifth.
D. a writ of certiorari.
In most circumstances, a supreme court is best described as a(n) ______ court.
The right of due process is best described as the right of
A. everyone to appeal his trial.
B. every citizen to vote.
C. every person not to be treated arbitrarily by a government official or agency.
D. every person to be a lawyer.
E. every person to sue when they feel harmed in some way.
All of the following are part of the official jurisdiction of the federal courts except
A. treaties with other nations.
B. federal statutes.
C. cases involving the U.S. Constitution.
D. cases involving citizens from the same state.
E. any case in which the U.S. government is party.
The jurisdiction of each federal court is derived from
A. the Constitution and federal law.
B. the Supreme Court.
C. state laws.
D. The federal courts decide their own jurisdictions.
E. the president.
A writ of habeas corpus declares that
A. the government must show a legal cause for holding someone in detention.
B. the government cannot send a defendant to stand trial in a geographically distant jurisdiction.
C. a defendant in a felony trial must receive assistance from legal council.
D. capital punishment can be neither cruel nor unusual.
E. the government cannot search premises without a warrant issues
Which of the following statements about the U.S. Courts of Appeals is incorrect?
A. The appeals courts were created by Congress, not by the Constitution.
B. The appeals courts are able to hear all cases involving federal law, but not constitutional law.
C. About 20 percent of federal cases are heard by the appeals courts.
D. There are more than ten appeals courts in the United States.
E. Except for cases selected for review by the Supreme Court, decisions made by the Appeals Court are final.
Each year, the Supreme Court receives about ______ appeals and hears about ______ of them in full court.
A. 1,000; 500
B. 200; 10
C. 10,000; 80
D. 12,000; 300
E. 5,000; 100
Original jurisdiction refers to
A. the Constitution as the supreme law of the land.
B. the court with the authority to hear a case first.
C. the highest court with the power to overrule other courts.
D. Congress's power to determine what cases the federal courts will hear.
E. the president's power to appoint federal judges.
Trial courts in the federal judicial system are called
A. grand juries.
B. district courts.
C. appellate courts.
D. administrative courts.
E. civil courts.
What is the main function of the chief justice of the Supreme Court?
A. The chief justice decides what cases will be heard by the full Court each term.
B. The chief justice always writes the Court's majority opinions.
C. The chief justice presides over the Court's public sessions and private conferences.
D. The chief justice is also the constitutional adviser to the president.
E. The chief justice is the constitutional adviser to Congress.
The size of the U.S. Supreme Court is set by
A. the U.S. Constitution.
C. a national convention.
D. the American Bar Association.
E. the president.
What was known as the court-packing plan?
A. the decision in the early nineteenth century that all federal courts should be guarded by members of the armed forces
B. the attempt by the Republican-dominated Senate of the 1990s to confirm as many conservative judges as possible
C. the attempt by Franklin Roosevelt to add sympathetic justices to the Supreme Court in order to get New Deal laws upheld as constitutional
D. the desire in Congress during the 1890s to expand the number of federal courts to ease the workload of the Supreme Court
E. the attempt by the Democratic-dominated Senate of the 1980s to confirm as many liberal judges as possible
Senatorial courtesy describes the practice of
A. senators from a president's party approving of a judicial nominee from their home state.
B. including home-state senators in the formal vetting of district and circuit court judges.
C. allowing any senator to place a hold on the consideration of a judicial nominee.
D. permitting senators to officially swear in home-state district court judges.
E. allowing senators to nominate members to the federal judiciary.
Why has partisan conflict surrounded federal judicial appointments in recent years?
A. Members of Congress do not want the president to have so much power that he can place anyone he wants on the federal bench.
B. The people recent presidents have chosen to nominate are often unqualified to be federal judges.
C. Public opinion has not been favorable to most of the people recent presidents have chosen to nominate.
D. There have not been enough minority nominees, including women.
E. The federal courts play an important role in shaping American law and politics.
In recent years, federal court appointments have
A. been characterized by strict neutrality on the part of Congress.
B. attracted very little attention from the media and special interest groups.
C. been characterized by intense partisan and ideological efforts to support or defeat the candidate.
D. been unaffected by ideological concerns.
E. been confirmed very quickly.
Through the exercise of ______, the Supreme Court has held actions or laws of the executive and legislative branches unconstitutional.
A. stare decisis
B. writs of certiorari
C. judicial review
E. wrtis of habeas corpus
Why is the Supreme Court case Marbury v. Madison important?
A. In this case, the Court declared the authority of Congress to regulate the economy of the United States.
B. In this case, the Court nationalized the Bill of Rights.
C. In this case, the Court authorized itself to exercise judicial review over laws passed by Congress.
D. In this case, the Court declared the secession of the Confederate states to be in violation of the Constitution.
E. In this case, the Court declared the segregation of schools based on race illegal.
The power of the Supreme Court to review state actions and legislation comes from
A. the judicial review clause of Article III.
B. the supremacy clause of Article VI.
C. the Tenth Amendment.
D. Marbury v. Madison.
Which of the following is part of the Miranda rule?
A. Arrested people have a right to remain silent.
B. Arrested people have the right to sue the police for police brutality.
C. Arrested people have a right to a fair trial.
D. Arrested people have the right to face their accuser.
E. Arrested people have the right to a reasonable bail.
The case Baker v. Carr concerns
A. desegregation of schools.
B. apportionment of legislative seats.
C. unwarranted searches and seizures.
D. the separation of church and state.
E. state restrictions on carrying handguns in public.
Most cases reach the Supreme Court through the
A. writ of appeal.
B. writ of certiorari.
C. writ of habeas corpus.
D. writ of amicus curiae.
E. state courts.
Which of the following best describes the role of the solicitor general?
A. the chief legal counsel for the White House
B. the lawyer who represents the United States before the Supreme Court in cases where the federal government is a party
C. the chief lawyer for Congress who makes advisory opinions on the constitutionality of legislative proposals
D. the head of the Department of Justice
E. the chief legal counsel to the U.S. Military
A person, agency, or interest group not directly a party to a case but with an interest in its outcome may file a(n) ______ brief.
B. per curiam
C. amicus curiae
When the Supreme Court refuses to review a lower-court decision, announcing this decision through a brief unsigned opinion, it is called ______ opinion.
A. a per curiam
B. an ex parte
C. a concurrence
D. an amicus curiae
E. an ex post facto
The written document in which attorneys explain why the court should rule in favor of their client is called a(n)
B. writ of certiorari.
D. writ of habeas corpus.
Under normal rules of oral argument, each lawyer has ______ to present his or her case before the Supreme Court.
A. thirty minutes
B. an hour
C. ninety minutes
D. two hours
E. unlimited time
When justices agree with the ruling of a court majority but not all of its reasoning, they may often write a(n)
C. ex parte.
D. per curiam.
E. writ of certiori.
What is the significance of dissenting opinions?
A. They are made to appeal to a justice's constituency groups.
B. They have as much weight of law as the majority's opinion does.
C. Dissents are signs that the Court is in disagreement on an issue and could change its ruling.
D. Dissents are meant to confuse lawyers and government officials as to the true meaning of a decided case.
E. They are meant to appease the losing side in a case.
If someone is an advocate of judicial restraint, he or she believes
A. in looking only at the words of the Constitution in order to understand its meaning.
B. that the Court should beware of overturning the judgments of popularly elected legislatures.
C. that judges should limit their interpretations to the intention of the law's framers.
D. the Court should go beyond the words of the Constitution or a statute to consider the broader societal implications of its decisions.
E. that judges should consider legal questions rather than deciding political matters.
Activist judges believe that the courts should
A. always overrule state legislatures and governors when making decisions.
B. interpret the U.S. Constitution according to the intentions of its framers and defer to the views of Congress when interpreting federal statutes.
C. be more aggressive and ideological than the president when vacancies occur on the court.
D. go beyond the words of a constitution or statute to consider the broader societal implications of its decisions.
E. always defer judgment to precedents set by previous courts
What did the framers call the "least dangerous branch"?
A. the Senate
B. the Supreme Court
C. the system of state courts
D. the president
E. the bureaucracy