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Federal Courts. Class 1 Alan Heinrich. Preliminaries. Introductions Course Policies Course Themes Course Overview. The Judicial Power. Article III:

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federal courts

Federal Courts

Class 1

Alan Heinrich

preliminaries
Preliminaries
  • Introductions
  • Course Policies
  • Course Themes
  • Course Overview
the judicial power
The Judicial Power

Article III:

Section 1. The judicial power of the United States, shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. . . .

Section 2. The judicial power shall extend to all cases, in law and equity, arising under this Constitution, the laws of the United States, and treaties made, or which shall be made, under their authority;--to all cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls;--to all cases of admiralty and maritime jurisdiction;--to controversies to which the United States shall be a party;--to controversies between two or more states;--between a state and citizens of another state;--between citizens of different states;--between citizens of the same state claiming lands under grants of different states, and between a state, or the citizens thereof, and foreign states, citizens or subjects.

muskrat v u s
Muskrat v. U.S.

Attributes of the Judicial Power?

muskrat v u s5
Muskrat v. U.S.
  • Hayburn’s Case
    • Judiciary used as administrative agency
    • Subject to executive review
muskrat v u s6
Muskrat v. U.S.
  • Hayburn’s Case
    • Judiciary used as administrative agency
    • Subject to executive review
  • Jefferson’s Query
    • Judiciary asked for advisory opinions
muskrat v u s7
Muskrat v. U.S.
  • Hayburn’s Case
    • Judiciary used as administrative agency
    • Subject to executive review
  • Jefferson’s Query
    • Judiciary asked for advisory opinions
  • Gordon v. U.S.
    • Judiciary deprived of ability to render enforceable judgments
muskrat v u s8
Muskrat v. U.S.

Attributes of the Judicial Power:

  • Power that is traditionally judicial:
    • Not an administrative arm of executive or legislature
  • Power to render judgments that are:
    • Valid and enforceable
    • Not subject to review by coordinate branches
  • Power to adjudicate claims between adverse parties
  • No advisory opinions
muskrat v u s9
Muskrat v. U.S.
  • "By cases and controversies are intended the claims of litigants brought before the courts for determination by such regular proceedings as are established by law or custom for the protection or enforcement of rights, or the prevention, redress, or punishment of wrongs. Whenever the claim of a party under the Constitution, laws, or treaties of the United States takes such a form that the judicial power is capable of acting upon it, then it has become a case. The term implies the existence of present or possible adverse parties whose contentions are submitted to the court for adjudication."
muskrat v u s10
Muskrat v. U.S.
  • "Judicial power," says Mr. Justice Miller in his work on the Constitution, "is the power of a court to decide and pronounce a judgment and carry it into effect between persons and parties who bring a case before it for decision."
muskrat v u s11
Muskrat v. U.S.

Why limit scope of judicial power?

muskrat v u s12
Muskrat v. U.S.

Why limit scope of judicial power?

  • Accountability for political branches
muskrat v u s13
Muskrat v. U.S.

Why limit scope of judicial power?

  • Accountability for political branches
  • Integrity of judicial process
muskrat v u s14
Muskrat v. U.S.

What was wrong with the lawsuit at issue in Muskrat?

Is Muskrat itself still good law?

allen v wright
Allen v. Wright

Challenged governmental action?

Statute?

IRS policy?

IRS procedures for enforcing policy?

allen v wright16
Allen v. Wright

Requirements for Constitutional Standing:

allen v wright17
Allen v. Wright

Requirements for Constitutional Standing:

Injury in fact

allen v wright18
Allen v. Wright

Requirements for Constitutional Standing:

Injury in fact

Causation

allen v wright19
Allen v. Wright

Requirements for Constitutional Standing:

Injury in fact

Causation

Fairly traceable to defendant’s actions

Redressable by court

allen v wright20
Allen v. Wright

Requirements for Constitutional Standing:

Injury in fact

Causation X

Fairly traceable to defendant’s actions

Redressable by court

allen v wright21
Allen v. Wright

What’s the majority’s concern?

Integrity of judicial process?

Deference to political branches?

(See p. 360, fn. 16)

allen v wright22
Allen v. Wright

What’s the dissent’s concern?

Integrity of judicial process?

Deference to political branches?

(See pp. 368, 373)

allen v wright23
Allen v. Wright

Majority:

Standing is a proxy that protects Executive’s discretion in administering the law from judicial oversight

Dissent:

Standing protects the integrity of the judicial process by requiring “concrete adverseness which sharpens the presentation of issues upon which the court so largely depends.”

allen v wright24
Allen v. Wright

Different result if IRS had official discriminatory policy?

allen v wright25
Allen v. Wright

Different result if IRS had official discriminatory policy?

Coit v. Green, p. 366:

Lawsuit “not simply to reform executive branch enforcement procedures, but to challenge a fundamental IRS policy decision.”

allen v wright26
Allen v. Wright

The idea of separation of powers that underlies standing doctrine explains why our cases preclude the conclusion that respondents' alleged injury "fairly can be traced to the challenged action" of the IRS. That conclusion would pave the way generally for suits challenging, not specifically identifiable Government violations of law, but the particular programs agencies establish to carry out their legal obligations. Such suits . . . are rarely if ever appropriate for federal-court adjudication.

allen v wright27
Allen v. Wright

When transported into the Art. III context, that principle, grounded as it is in the idea of separation of powers, counsels against recognizing standing in a case brought, not to enforce specific legal obligations whose violation works a direct harm, but to seek a restructuring of the apparatus established by the Executive Branch to fulfill its legal duties. The Constitution, after all, assigns to the Executive Branch, and not to the Judicial Branch, the duty to "take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed." We could not recognize respondents' standing in this case without running afoul of that structural principle.

allen v wright28
Allen v. Wright

Is the causation prong of the standing inquiry the appropriate legal “hook”?

Is Coit really distinguishable with respect to the causation issue?

Why does it matter, for standing purposes, whether the challenged gov’t action is an official policy or enforcement procedures?

allen v wright29
Allen v. Wright

Different result if state action, rather than the action of a coordinate federal branch, were at issue?

allen v wright30
Allen v. Wright

Different result if state action, rather than the action of a coordinate federal branch, were at issue?

Norwood

allen v wright31
Allen v. Wright

Different result if state action, rather than the action of a coordinate federal branch, were at issue?

Norwood:

Why does a state’s provision of free textbooks to discriminatory schools cause injury to the right to nonsegregated education, but the IRS’s provision of tax exempt status to such schools does not?

allen v wright32
Allen v. Wright

Different result if Congress had not expressed contrary intent?

(See p. 360, n. 16; p. 364: Laird v. Tatum)

allen v wright33
Allen v. Wright

Different result if different class of plaintiffs?

allen v wright34
Allen v. Wright

Stevens’ Dissent:

The doctrine of standing should not be used as a proxy for separation of powers concerns. SOP issues should be addressed directly.

What is the response to this argument?

allen v wright35
Allen v. Wright

Different result if different class of plaintiffs?

How could there be a different result, if the majority decided case on the basis that the judiciary should not oversee Executive’s administration and enforcement of the law?

standing
Standing

Does nonexclusive licensee of patent have constitutional standing to sue for infringement?:

Injury in fact?

Fairly traceable to defendant’s actions?

Redressable by court?

standing37
Standing

Section 281 of the Patent Act provides:

“A patentee shall have remedy by civil action for infringements of his patent.”

Congress has not granted a nonexclusive licensee the right to sue for infringement. Such a licensee therefore does not suffer a legally cognizable injury from infringement.

Congress can define the “injury” required for constitutional standing.

standing38
Standing

Requirements for Constitutional Standing:

Legally cognizable injury in fact

Fairly traceable to defendant’s actions

Redressable by court

schlesinger v reservists comm
Schlesinger v. Reservists Comm.

Standing requires concrete, particularized injury – not a “generalized grievance”

Schlesinger’s explanation of concrete injury requirement – closer to Allen majority or dissent?

lujan v defenders of wildlife
Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife

Endangered Species Act “Citizen Suit” Provision:

“Any person may commence a civil suit on his own behalf to enjoin any person, including the U.S. and any other governmental instrumentality or agency who is alleged to be in violation of any provision of [the Endenagered Species Act].”

lujan v defenders of wildlife41
Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife

Standing requires concrete, particularized injury – not a “generalized grievance”

Lujan’s explanation of concrete injury requirement – closer to Allen majority or dissent?

Rule against “generalized grievances” in Lujan – constitutional or prudential basis?

lujan v defenders of wildlife42
Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife

The question presented here is whether the public interest in proper administration of the laws (specifically, in agencies' observance of a particular, statutorily prescribed procedure) can be converted into an individual right by a statute that denominates it as such, and that permits all citizens (or, for that matter, a subclass of citizens who suffer no distinctive concrete harm) to sue. If the concrete injury requirement has the separation of powers significance we have always said, the answer must be obvious: to permit Congress to convert the undifferentiated public interest in executive officers' compliance with the law into an "individual right" vindicable in the courts is to permit Congress to transfer from the President to the courts the Chief Executive's most important constitutional duty, to "take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed," Art. II, 3. It would enable the courts, with the permission of Congress, "to assume a position of authority over the governmental acts of another and coequal department," and to become "`virtually continuing monitors of the wisdom and soundness of Executive action.'"

lujan v defenders of wildlife43
Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife

Does the Lujan majority reject the principle that Congress can define “injuries” that suffice to create standing?

Does the Lujan majority reject the principle that Congress can define procedural injuries that suffice to create standing?

lujan v defenders of wildlife44
Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife

You represent an environmental organization that seeks a ruling on the merits of the ESA issue raised in Lujan.

What facts do you develop in discovery to overcome Lujan?

fec v akins
FEC v. Akins

Was the injury alleged in Akins concrete and particularized?

How did plaintiff’s alleged injury differ from the injury suffered by any other voter?

What is left of Lujan’s prohibition against generalized grievances after Akins?

ripeness
Ripeness

Declaratory Judgment Act

Ripeness requirement for declaratory judgment patent cases

“Ripeness” under Administrative Procedures Act

ripeness47
Ripeness

Declaratory Judgment Act: 28 U.S.C. 2201

Applies to cases of “actual controversy”

Tracks Article III requirements

ripeness48
Ripeness

Ripeness test for declaratory judgment patent cases:

  • explicit threat by patentee creating reasonable apprehension of suit.
  • activities by DJ plaintiff that could constitute infringement

Touchstone: “whether need for judicial attention is real and immediate.”

ripeness49
Ripeness

Ripeness-related issues for Administrative Procedures Act cases:

  • “Final Agency Action”
  • Exhaustion of administrative remedies
  • Constitutional ripeness