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APUSH Supreme Court Cases

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Marbury v. Madison (1803, Marshall)
The court established its role as the arbiter of the constitutionality of federal laws, the principle is known as judicial review
Fletcher v. Peck (1810, Marshall)
The decision stems from the Yazoo land cases, 1803, and upholds the sanctity of contracts.
McCulloch v. Maryland (1819, Marshall)
The Court ruled that states cannot tax the federal government, i.e. the Bank of the United States; the phrase "the power to tax is the power to destroy"; confirmed the constitutionality of the Bank of the United States.
Dartmouth College v. Woodward (1819, Marshall)
New Hampshire had attempted to take over Dartmouth College by revising its colonial charter. The Court ruled that the charter was protected under the contract clause of the U. S. Constitution; upholds the sanctity of contracts.
Gibbons v. Ogden (1824, Marshall)
Clarified the commerce clause and affirmed Congressional power over interstate commerce.
Johnson v. McIntosh (1823, Marshall)
Established that Indian tribes had rights to tribal lands that preceded all other American law; only the federal government could take land from the tribes.
Cherokee Nation v. Georgia (1831, Marshall)
"The conditions of the Indians in relation to the United States is perhaps unlike that of any two people in existence," Chief Justice John Marshall wrote, "their relation to the United States resembles that of a ward to his guardian. . .(they were a) domestic dependent nation." Established a "trust relationship" with the tribes directly under federal authority.
Worcester v. Georgia (1832, Marshall)
Established tribal autonomy within their boundaries, i.e. the tribes were "distinct political communities, having territorial boundaries within which their authority is exclusive."
Charles River Bridge v. Warren Bridge (1837, Taney)
The interests of the community are more important than the interests of business; the supremacy of society's interest over private interest.
Commonwealth v. Hunt (1842, Taney)
Declared that labor unions were lawful organizations and that the strike was a lawful weapon.
Scott v. Sanford (1857, Taney)
Speaking for a widely divided court, Chief Justice Taney ruled that Dred Scott was not a citizen and had no standing in court; Scott's residence in a free state and territory had not made him free since he returned to Missouri; Congress had no power to prohibit slavery in a territory (based on the 5th Amendment right of a person to be secure from seizure of property), thus voiding the Missouri Compromise of 1820.
Ex Parte Merryman (1861, Taney)
American Civil War case contesting the president's power to suspend the writ of habeas corpus during a national emergency.
Ex parte Milligan (1866)
Ruled that a civilian cannot be tried in military courts while civil courts are available.
Munn v. Illinois (1877)
Supreme Court upheld the right of a state to regulate businesses of a public nature (i.e. RR's)
Wabash, St. Louis, and Pacific Railway Co. v. Illinois (1886)
Declared state-passed Granger laws that regulated interstate commerce unconstitutional.
U.S. v. E.C. Knight Co. (1895)
Due to a narrow interpretation of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, the Court undermined the authority of the federal government to act against monopolies.
Plessy v. Ferguson (1896)
Legalized segregation in publicly owned facilities on the basis of "separate but equal."
"Insular Cases" / Downes v. Bidwell (1901)
Confirmed the right of the federal government to place tariffs on good entering the U. S. From U. S. Territories on the grounds that "the Constitution does not follow the flag."
Northern Securities Co. v. U. S. (1904)
Re-established the authority of the federal government to fight monopolies under the Sherman Antitrust Act.
Lochner v. New York (1905)
Declared unconstitutional a New York act limiting the working hours of bakers due to a denial of the 14th Amendment rights.
Muller v. Oregon (1908)
Recognized a 10-hour work day for women laundry workers on the grounds of health and community concerns.
Hammer v. Dagenhart (1918)
Declared the Keating-Owen Act (a child labor act) unconstitutional on the grounds that it was an invasion of state authority.
Schenck v. U. S. (1919)
Unanimously upheld the Espionage Act of 1917 which declared that people who interfered with the war effort were subject to imprisonment; declared that the 1st Amendment right to freedom of speech was not absolute; free speech could be limited if its exercise presented a "clear and present danger."
US v. Butler (1936)
Agricultural Adjustment Act is unconstitutional
Schechter v. U. S. (1936)
Sometimes called "the sick chicken case." Unanimously declared the National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA) unconstitutional on three grounds: that the act delegated legislative power to the executive; that there was a lack of constitutional authority for such legislation; and that it sought to regulate businesses that were wholly intrastate in character.
Korematsu v. U. S. (1941)
The court upheld the constitutionality of detention camps for Japanese-Americans during World War II.
Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas (1954, Warren)
Unanimous decision declaring "separate but equal" in schools unconstitutional.
Mapp v. Ohio (1961, Warren)
The court ruled that evidence obtained in violation of the fourth amendment (protects against "unreasonable search and seizures") can not be used in state and federal court.
Engel v. Vitale (1962, Warren)
It was ruled that official prayer in school was unconstitutional.
Baker v. Carr (1962, Warren)
Gerrymandering unconstitutional. One man, one vote.
Gideon v. Wainwright (1963, Warren)
Extends to the defendant the right of counsel in all state and federal criminal trials regardless of their ability to pay.
Escobedo v. Illinois (1964, Warren)
Ruled that a defendant must be allowed access to a lawyer before questioning by police.
Griswold v. Connecticut (1965, Warren
Cannot prohibit right to contraceptives
Miranda v. Arizona (1966, Warren)
The court ruled that those subjected to in-custody interrogation be advised of their constitutional right to an attorney and their right to remain silent.
Brandenburg v. Ohio (1969, Warren)
Government cannot punish inflammatory speech unless that speech is "directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and is likely to incite or produce such action." (KKK)
Tinker v. Des Moines (1969, Warren)
Freedom of speech for students as long as it does not interfere with the learning environment. (Anti Vietnam War protest, armbands)
New York Times v. US (1971)
Government cannot restrict free speech (prior restraint) unless national security would be hurt (Pentagon Papers)
Roe v. Wade (1973)
The court legalized abortion by ruling that state laws could not restrict it during the first three months of pregnancy. Based on 4th Amendment rights of a person to be secure in their persons.
U. S. v. Richard Nixon (1974)
The court rejected Richard Nixon's claim to an absolutely unqualified privilege against any judicial process.
Bakke v. Regents of the University of California (1978)
Ambiguous ruling by a badly divided court that dealt with affirmative action programs that used race as a basis of selecting participants. The court general upheld affirmative action, but with a 4/4/1 split, it was a very weak decision.
Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992)
Upheld the constitutional right to have an abortion while altering the standard for analyzing restrictions on that right, crafting the "undue burden" standard for abortion restrictions. Can regulate abortions in the first trimester, or any point before the point of viability, and beyond as long as that regulation does not pose an undue burden on an abortion.
Clinton v. Jones (1997)
Rejecting an appeal by Pres. Clinton in a sexual harassment suit, the Court ruled that a sitting president did not have temporary immunity from a lawsuit for actions outside the realm of official duties.
Boy Scouts of America v. Dale (2000)
The Court ruled that the Boy Scouts of America could dismiss a troop leader after learning he was gay, holding that the right to freedom of association outweighed a New Jersey anti - discrimination statute.
Bush v. Gore (2000)
The court ruled that manual recounts of presidential ballots in the Nov. 2000 election could not proceed because inconsistent evaluation standards in different counties violated the equal protection clause. In effect, the ruling meant Bush would win the election.
Citizens United v. FEC (2010)
Corporations can make independent campaign donations in federal campaigns
US v. Windsor (2013)
Held that restricting U.S. federal interpretation of "marriage" and "spouse" to apply only to opposite-sex unions, by Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), is unconstitutional under the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment.
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