Judicial Power and Constraint

Judicial Power and Constraint

The Supreme Court is personified by the nine justices who sit on the High Court. They have life tenure, and their nominations today are often the result of epochal battles between Republicans and Democrats and conservatives and liberals. Understanding why the Supreme Court has become the single most powerful judicial body in the world will help you understand just why the judicial branch is so important in the public policy arena. The Supreme Court has the power to decide what is constitutional and what is not. However, there are many more powers that the judicial branch possesses and uses to check and balance the other branches of government.

As you review this week’s Learning Resources, pay attention to how the Supreme Court defines itself and its legal values in the exercise of its power. Also think about the constraints and powers of the judicial branch in relation to the executive and legislative branches.

Find a current events item that clearly shows how the power of the Supreme Court is being used in impacting policy.

  • Blackstone, B. (2013). An analysis of policy-based congressional responses to the U.S. Supreme Court’s constitutional decisions. Law & Society Review47(1), 199–228. 
    Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
  • Treanor, W. M. (2005). Judicial review before Marbury. Stanford Law Review, 58(2), 455–562. 
    Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
  • Unah, I. (1996). The Supreme Court’s institutional stature and role in public policymaking. Policy Studies Journal24(4), 679–685. 
    Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
  • Wiist, W. H. (2011). Citizens united, public health, and democracy: The Supreme Court ruling, its implications, and proposed action. American Journal of Public Health101(7), 1172–1179. 
    Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
  • Cuello, L. (2013). The Supreme Court decision on health care reform. The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights/The Leadership Conference Education Fund. Retrieved from http://www.civilrights.org/monitor/march-2013/the-supreme-court-decision-on.html
  • National Federation of Independent Business et al. v. Sebelius, Secretary of Health And Human Services, et al., 132 S. Ct. 2566 (2012). Retrieved fromhttp://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/11pdf/11-393c3a2.pdf

    Note: Given the complexity of the decision, you are to read the majority and dissenting opinions. Review the other parts of the decision at your discretion.

  • Oyez Project. (n.d.). Retrieved April 28, 2014, from http://www.oyez.org/
  • SCOTUSblog. (n.d.). Retrieved April 28, 2014, from http://www.scotusblog.com/
  •  Supreme Court of the United States. (n.d.). Retrieved April 28, 2014, fromhttp://www.supremecourt.gov/
  • Supreme Court of the United States. (2014). National Labor Relations Board, Petitioners v. Noel Canning, et al. Retrieved fromhttp://www.supremecourt.gov/oral_arguments/argument_transcripts/12-1281_3d9g.p

300-500 words APA format