AP Government 15 Required Supreme Court Cases 2018
Terms in this set (15)
Schenck v United States (1919)
Defendant mailed fliers to draftees during WWI urging them to protest the craft peacefully. Was convicted of violating a federal law against encouraging the disobedience of military orders. Oliver Wendel Holmes wrote in the opinion that such speech was not protected during wartime because it would create a clear and present danger, establishing a standard for measuring what would and would not be protected speech. The question before the Court was the line between the effect of freedom of speech and national draft orders.
Tinker V. Des Moines Independent Community School District (1969)
The Court ruled that wearing black armbands in protest of the Vietnam War was symbolic speech, protected by the First Amendment. The question before the court was of about the 1st Amendment.
New York Times Co V. U.S (1971)
The Court reaffirmed its position of prior restraint, refusing to stop the publication of the Pentagon Papers. The question before the court was about publish work, it was tied into the freedom of speech.
Gideon v. Wainwright (1963)
The Court ruled that in state trials, those who cannot afford an attorney will have one provided by the state, overturning Betts v. Brady. The question before the court was about Sovereignty immunity.
Brown V. Board of Education of Topeka (1954)
The "separate but equal" doctrine as it applies to public education is unconstitutional; separate schools are inherently unequal. The court overturned Plessy v. Ferguson. The question before the court was if it was okay to have schools based on race, that were not equal. It integrated schools.
Roe V. Wade (1973)
Women have an absolute right to an abortion in the first trimester of pregnancy based on a constitutionally protected right of privacy, the state can impose restrictions in the second and third trimesters. The question before the court was if women got the right to choose to abort their pregnancy or not.
Marbury v. Madison (1803)
The court established its role as the arbiter of the constitutionality of federal laws, the principle is known as judicial review.
McCulloch v. Maryland (1819)
The courts ruled that the 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"; federal government is supreme to the states (supremacy clause); confirmed the constitutionality of the Bank of the United States (elastic clause).
Engel v. Vitale (1962)
A state authorized students in its public schools to recite a short, voluntary prayer. The Court found that prayer could not be mandated by public schools as it violated establishment clause of 1st Amendment
Baker v. Carr (1961)
case that established the principle of one man, one vote. This decision created guidelines for apportionment, drawing up congressional districts to guarantee a more equitable system of representation to the citizens of each state. - The case also decided the Supreme Court had jurisdiction over questions of legislative apportionment.
U.S. v. Lopez (1995)
In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Court of Appeals. It held that while Congress had broad lawmaking authority under the Commerce Clause, the power was limited, and did not extend so far from "commerce" as to authorize the regulation of the carrying of handguns, especially when there was no evidence that carrying them affected the economy on a massive scale
Keyword: Limited Commerce Authority
Wisconsin v. Yoder (1972)
case in which the U.S. Supreme Court ruled (7-0) that compulsory school attendance law was unconstitutional when applied to the Amish, because it violated their rights under the First Amendment, which guaranteed the free exercise of religion.
McDonald v. Chicago (2010)
a landmark decision of the Supreme Court of the United States that determined whether the Second Amendment applies to the individual states. The Court held that the right of an individual to "keep and bear arms" protected by the Second Amendment is incorporated by the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and applies to the states. The decision cleared up the uncertainty left in the wake of District of Columbia v. Heller as to the scope of gun rights in regard to the states.
Keyword: Gun Control in States
Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission (2010)
a landmark United States Supreme Court case in which the Court held that the First Amendment prohibited the government from restricting independent political expenditures by corporations and unions.
Keyword: Independent Political Expenditures
Shaw v. Reno (1993)
a landmark case in the area of redistricting and racial gerrymandering. The court ruled in a 5-4 decision that redistricting based on race must be held to a standard of strict scrutiny under the equal protection clause. On the other hand, bodies doing redistricting must be conscious of race to the extent that they must ensure compliance with the Voting Rights Act of 1965.