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judicial review

power of the courts to review acts of the other branches of gov and the states

Marbury v Madison (1803)

SC first established its power of judicial review; found that the congresssional law extending the Court's original jurisdicition was unconstituional

appellate courts

courts that review the findings of law made by lower courts


authority given to a particular court to hear and decide the issues in a case

original jurisdiction

jurisdiction of the courts that hear a case first.(courts determine the facts of a case under original juris)

appellate jurisdiction

power given to an appellate court to rewier and/or revise the decision of a lower court

constitutional courts

federal courts created by the Constitution or Congress

legislative courts

courts created by Congress for a special purpose


prior judicial decisions that serve as a rule for settling cases of a similar form

stare decisis

a reliance on past decisions or precedents to make decisions in new cases

senatorial courtesy

presidents give selection of district court judges to the choice of senators of their own party who represent the state where the vacancy occurs

strict constuctionist

constitutional interpretation that emphasizes the Framers' original intent

writ of certiorari

request for the court to order the records from a lower court in order to review the case

rule of four

at least four judges of the SC must vote to consider a case

solicitor general

4th ranking member of the Department of Justice, responsible for handling all appeals to the SC

amicus curiae

"Friend of the Court" ; a person may file briefs or appear to argue their interests orally befor the court

judicial restraint

philosophy of judicial decision making that argues that courts should allow the decisions of other branches og gov to stand, even if it offends a judges own principles

judicial activism

judicial decision making that argues judges should use their power broadly to further justice

judicial implementation

refers to how and whether judicial decisions are translated into public policies affecting more than the immediate members to the lawsuit

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