Chapter 15 - The courts

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The ability of the Supreme Court to "say what the law is" is more formally known as

judicial review

The doctrine of judicial review was established by

Marbury v. Madison

Alexis de Tocqueville, an observer of nineteenth-century American society, indicated that Americans rely on courts to

resolve political questions

Most American law is based on

the English legal system

The body of judge-made law is known as

common law

A court rule bearing on subsequent legal decisions in similar cases is called

precedent

The doctrine of stare decisis means

to stand on the decided cases

Sources of American law include all except

the charter of the united nations

The rules and principles announced in court decisions are called

case law

Under the doctrine of judicial review, the Supreme Court has ruled parts or all of acts of Congress to be unconstitutional about _____ in its history

200 times

Using judicial review, the Supreme Court has ruled state laws to be unconstitutional about _____ in its history

1,000 times

The United States has a dual court system. There are

state courts and federal courts

The federal court derives its power from _____ and is organized according to_____

Article III of the Constitution
Congressional legislation

Jurisdiction and standing to sue are

basic judicial requirements

The suthority of a court to hear and decide a particular class of cases is known as

jurisdiction

A question that has to do with the US Constitution, acts of Congress, or treaties is known as a _____

federal

Diversity of citizenship exists when

the parties to the lawsuit are from different states

Standing to sue is determined

by whether a person or group has suffered harm as a result of the action that led to the dispute in question

Justiciable disputes

are issues appropriate for resolution in court

Issues appropriate for resolution in court are known as

justiciable disputes

Tax courts and bankruptcy courts are examples of

courts of limited jurisdiction

US district courts are

trial courts

Each state

has at least one federal district court

Usually appelate courts look at questions of

law

The Supreme court can review a state supreme court decision

only if a federal question is involved

According to the Constitution, the Supreme Court can exercise original jurisdiction

in cases affecting foreign diplomats and in cases in which the state is a party

The FISA court

can issue warrants without revealing the information used to justify the warrant

To engage in legal proceedings or seek relief in a court of law is to

litigate

Interest groups play an important role in oour judicial system because

they bring to trial cases of discrimination, civil liberties cases and more than a third of cases involving business matters

A brief filed by a third party who is not directly involved in the litigation but who has an interest in the outcome of a case is called

an amicus curiae brief

A lawsuit seeking damages for "all persons sililarly situated" is called

a class-action suit

A class-action suit is a

lawsuit seeking damages for "all persons similarly situated"

A court that hears a broad, non-restricted range of cases is known as a court of

general jurisdiction

Of the total number of cases that are decided each year, those reviewed by the Supreme Court represent

less than one-half of 1 percent

A writ of certiorari by the Supreme Court orders

a lower court to send it the record of a case for review

Most petitions for writs of certiorari to the Supreme Court are

denied

A procedure used by the Supreme Court to determine which cases it will hear is called

the rule of four

A opinion of a court

sets forth the reasoning upon which the ruling was based

The reasoning upon which a court ruling was based is known as

the opinion

If a case is remanded, it

is sent back to the court that heard the case

If a case if affirmed, it

means the decision is valid and must stand

A justice who agrees with the result reached by the majority of the Court but wants to voice disapproval of the grounds on which the decision was made would write

a concurring opinion

A court opinion reflecting the views of most of the judges is called

a majority opinion

A dissenting opinion can be important because

it often forms the basis of the arguments used later to reverse the majority opinion in a similar case

Spoken presentations by attorneys to the appellate court laying out the reasons why the court should rule in his or her client's favor are known as

oral arguments

some scholars suggest that one of the reasons the Supreme Court hears fewer cases today than in the past is the

growing conserrvatism of the judges sitting on lower courts

When all Supreme court justices agree to an opinion, it is known as a _____ opinion

unanimous

The most likely occupational position of a Supreme Court nominee before nominaiton is

federal judgeship

Judicial candidates for federal judgeships are usually suggested by all of the following except

governors

The concept of senatorial courtesy refers to the

practice of allowing senators to veto candidates for federal district courts in their state

In the twenty-first century, Senate Republicans implemented a policy that

members of the opposition party, the Democrats, would not be allowed to invoke senatorial courtesy

Over the course of American history, Supreme Court justices have tended to be

protestant white males

There has never been an instance in which

more than two women served on the united states supreme court at the same time

Almost _____ percent of presidential nominations to the Supreme Court have been iether rejected or not acted on by the Senate

20

Sandra Day O'Connor was

appointed as a conservative but gradually shited to a more liberal position during her years on the Supreme Coourt

George W. Bush had to forgo one of his nominees to the Supreme Court, _____, when he realized that he could not win the confirmation battle in the Senate

Harriet Miers

The pwer of the courts to determine whether a law or action by the other branches of government is constitutional is called

judicial review

Judicial activism means

that the Supreme Court should actively check the other branches of government when they exceed their authority

The philosophy that the Supreme Court should actively check the other branches of government when they exceed their authority is known as

judicial activism

Strict construction means

attempting to follow the "letter of the law"

Which member of the current Supreme Court was quoted as saying "the Constitution is not a living organism, it is a legal document" which should be interpreted "as it was originally written and intended"

antonin scalia

The Supreme Court under the leadership of William Rehnquist

reversed a Florida Supreme Court decision that ordereded a manual recount of the votes in selected Florida counties after the 2000 presidential election

The judicial philosophy that looks to the context and purpose of a law when making an interpretation is known as

broad construction

The doctrin that holds that the Supreme Court should defer to the decisions made by the elected representatives of the people is known as judicial

restraint

Presidents have the pwer to change the direction of the Supreme Court and the federal judiciary by

appointing new judges who in principle have philosophies consistent with the president

Judicial implementation refers to

the execution of court decisions into policy

If Congress disagrees with a decision of the Supreme Court concerning the interpretation of the US Constitution it can

propose an amendment to the constitution that would negate the Court's ruling

Many states reacted to the Court's decision in Kelo v. City of New London by

passing legislation limiting the ability of government to take private property for redevelopment by private business

Public opinion can serve as a check on the judiciary because

the public may pressure elected officials not to enforce an unpopular ruling

An issue that the court believes should be decided by the executive or legislative branch is called

a political question

Under our constitutionsystem, federal judges

are nominated by the president and confirmed by a majority of the Senate

From 1789 to 1970 the average Supreme Court justice served

only fifteen years and left the court at age 68, while since 1970 the average tenure is more than twenty-five years and retirement age is closer to 80

About ____ of those people exonerated by DNA testing are members of a minority group

70 %

To date, ____ people had death sentences before DNA proved their innocence

16

Sharia law is drawn not only from the Koran, but also

from the way the Prophet Muhammad lived his life

Jurisdiction refers to

the authority of a court to hear and decide a particular class of cases

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