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The Judiciary. The Judiciary. Trial Courts vs Appellate Courts (original jurisdiction vs appellate jurisdiction). Overview of the Federal court system :. Specialized courts US Claims Court US Court of Military Appeals US Court of International Trade US Tax Court.

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the judiciary1
The Judiciary
  • Trial Courts vs Appellate Courts
    • (original jurisdiction vs appellate jurisdiction)
overview of the federal court system
Overview of the Federal court system:
  • Specialized courts
    • US Claims Court
    • US Court of Military Appeals
    • US Court of International Trade
    • US Tax Court
overview of the federal court system1
Overview of the Federal court system:

District Courts (94)

  • 1 to 28 judges in each District
  • Total of 649 judges
  • 300,000 civil and criminal cases

Circuit Courts(12)

  • Hears civil and criminal cases appealed from the U.S. District Courts
  • Total of 179 judges
  • 50,000-60,000 cases
nominating federal judges
Nominating Federal Judges
  • Overview
    • Nominated by President with advice and consent of the Senate (role of Senate Judiciary Committee)
  • Concept of “Senatorial Courtesy”
    • The Senate as a whole will reject the nomination of any candidate that is opposed by a senator of the President’s party from the nominee’s state
the u s supreme court
The U.S. Supreme Court
  • Original and Appellate Jurisdiction
  • Congressional Controls over the federal court system
    • Number of members
    • Jurisdiction
    • Initiating amendments to the Constitution
    • Role in nominating Federal Judges
the u s supreme court1
The U.S. Supreme Court
  • The workings of the Supreme Court
    • Writs of Certiorari
    • The Rule of Four
  • The Supreme Court in Session
    • Oral Arguments
    • Amicus Curiae Briefs
    • Majority, Dissenting, and Concurring Opinions
the u s supreme court2
The U.S. Supreme Court
  • Origins of the Supreme Court
    • Concept of Judicial Review – Marbury v. Madison (1803)
  • The powers (and limits) of the Supreme Court
judicial activism versus judicial restraint
Judicial Activism versus Judicial Restraint
  • Arguments for judicial restraint:
    • Lack of expertise in non-judicial matters
    • Judges can be immune from popular control – act as “unelected legislators”
    • Coincides with a strict interpretation of the Constitution
  • Arguments for judicial activism:
    • Judges don’t have to get re-elected so they can speak their conscience
    • Often this is the last resort for justice to be achieved
    • Coincides with a loose interpretation of the Constitution
missouri s judicial system
Missouri’s Judicial System
  • Circuit courts - (trial courts)
    • Most elected for a 6 year term
  • Appellate courts - 3 Districts
    • Eastern, Western, and Southern
    • 32 judges
    • Elected for 12 year terms
  • MO Supreme Court
    • 7 members, 12 year terms
the missouri plan applies to appellate judges
The Missouri Plan – applies to Appellate Judges
  • Role of the Governor and the “Appellate Judicial Commission”
  • Voter Approval
  • Advantages and Disadvantages?
    • The larger issue: how accountable should judges be to the political process?