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The Judicial Branch. Helen Oh Yiyun Kong Janell Ang. The Basics. Courts settle conflict Two types Criminal law Civil law Jurisdiction Original (91 district courts) Appellate (federal judicial circuits) Participants(litigants) P laintiff Defendant Class action suits

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the judicial branch

The Judicial Branch

Helen Oh

Yiyun Kong

JanellAng

the basics
The Basics
  • Courts settle conflict
  • Two types
    • Criminal law
    • Civil law
  • Jurisdiction
    • Original (91 district courts)
    • Appellate (federal judicial circuits)
  • Participants(litigants)
    • Plaintiff
    • Defendant
  • Class action suits
  • Justiciable disputes
united states supreme court
United States Supreme Court
  • Highest court in the land
  • Nine justices
    • Appointed for life
  • Resolve conflicts between states
  • Interpret national law
  • Original and appellate jurisdiction
  • Judicial review (Marbury v. Madison)
  • Cases must have substantial federal question
  • “rule of four”
  • Writ of certiorari
supreme court decisions
Supreme Court Decisions
  • Cases are heard Oct-June in 2 week cycles
  • Judges receive written briefs like amicus curiae
  • Attorneys given 30 minutes to argue
  • Opinions
    • Reasoning behind them is important
    • Majority
    • Concurring
    • Dissenting
  • Stare decisis: “let the decision stand”
    • Lower courts follow precedent
    • Can overrule its own precedent
relations between government branches
Relations between Government Branches
  • President
    • President nominates judges and the Senate confirms the nomination with majority vote
    • Tradition of senatorial courtesy
  • Congress
    • Lower federal courts, district courts, and courts of appeal
    • Justices may be impeached by Congress
    • Judiciary Act of 1789
  • Bureaucracy
    • Policy implementation
linkage institutions
Linkage Institutions
  • Interest groups
    • Seek out litigants (ie. NAACP in Brown v. Board of Education)
    • Amicus curiae briefs
  • Public opinion and voters
    • No influence on decisions made by the court
  • Media
    • Reports important problems
  • Political parties
    • Presidential appointments
linkage institutions1
Linkage Institutions
  • Subnational government
    • Lower courts
    • Questioned when constitutional law is/is possibly broken