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Questions tagged [supreme-court]

In most instances is the highest court in a country and isn't always called as such i.e. high court of austrailia for example. If the country has multiple supreme courts, specify which one in your question. Please also tag questions with the relevant country too.

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Is there a “nuclear option” regarding the election of a constitutional judge in Germany?

In Germany, the parliament has just agreed on a successor for one of the judges of the constitutional court. The candidate has to be elected in parliament with 2/3 of the votes as well as the majority ...
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Has the US Supreme court ever altered its own precedent on the same topic twice?

I know there have been a number of instances where the United States Supreme Court has basically 'changed its mind' and ruled in a manner counter to a previous Supreme Court ruling. The most obvious ...
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Instead of proposing a “dialogic process” for judicial review, why doesn't Mark Tushnet want to amend the Constitution as necessary?

In a recent Vox.com interview with Harvard legal scholar Mark Tushnet, Dr. Tushnet presented his ideas to journalist Sean Illing: Sean Illing How unusual is it for a liberal democratic system ...
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How do Chief Justices of the Supreme Court get replaced?

I'm wondering how do Chief Justices of the United States get replaced? According to wikipedia, the last Chief Justice, Judge William Rehnquist was initially an Associate Justice. President Reagan ...
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How did the Kavanaugh confirmation move so quickly despite the serious allegations?

I did not pay attention to the news for a few days and am completely confused now. Last I saw, Kavanaugh was in the midst of his sexual assault hearings. I thought Trump had said he would let a ...
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Why is the debate on the composition of the U.S. Supreme Court so politicised?

Why is the debate on the composition of the United States Supreme Court so politicised? Many other countries, such as the United Kingdom, Germany, Netherlands, European Union, and others, have courts ...
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How do proponents of the “Living Constitution” view respond to the argument that it undermines democracy?

Those who reject originalism as a judicial philosophy generally say that the Constitution is a "living document" which changes in meaning as society changes. Further, they believe that the Supreme ...
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Occurrences when a supreme court nominee (or potential nominee) was rejected by election timing

When Barack Obama was president the Republican majority refused to vote on the appointment of Merrick Garland because of the close upcoming presidential election. This seems to have been coined as the ...
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What do Democrats have to gain, politically, by preventing Brett Kavanaugh's appointment to the Supreme Court?

From a purely political perspective: If his nomination is withdrawn, won't Trump just nominate another conservative judge (who would presumably be confirmed by the republican-controlled senate)?
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Is Judge Roberts committed to the status quo against partisanship?

I was surprised to see some commentary in this answer and its comments indicating that Supreme Court Justice John Roberts is committed to maintaining status quo jurisprudence against substantial ...
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Why don't Democrats encourage Christine Blasey Ford to file a criminal complaint against Kavanaugh in Maryland to trigger a local investigation? [closed]

This analysis indicates that a complaint should trigger an investigation in this case. In particular, there's good reason to believe there is no statute of limitations in effect: Maryland’s former ...
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Is there any talk to change the nomination process for the SCOTUS?

I have previously asked why the SCOTUS (Supreme Court Of The United States) nomination and confirmation process is what it is. What I gather is that it ideally is a way to keep the Judicial branch ...
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Why weren't allegations based on Judge Kavanaugh's 1983 yearbook, raised during his nomination in 2006 to the DC Circuit?

I refer only to the allegations based on the Hon. Judge Kavanaugh's 1983 yearbook from Georgetown Preparatory School (like 'Renate Alumnus', and alcoholic consumption slang), and not those that were ...
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Do originalist U.S. Supreme Court justices tend to be politically right-leaning?

Is there significant overlap between originalism and political conservatism?
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Can the Senate postpone confirming a new Supreme Court judge virtually indefinitely?

Right now the Republican leadership are refusing to confirm a Supreme Court nominee in order to keep a Democratic President's nomination from being accepted. Can the Senate postpone confirming a ...
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Why can't the Republican party force a vote on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh?

In the related question What do Democrats have to gain, politically, by preventing Brett Kavanaugh's appointment to the Supreme Court? various aspects of how the Democrats benefit from delaying the ...
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What were the previous 6 FBI investigations of Brett Kavanaugh?

Donald Trump tweeted: Just started, tonight, our 7th FBI investigation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh. He will someday be recognized as a truly great Justice of The United States Supreme Court! What ...
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What power, if any, does the SCOTUS Chief Justice have to hamper or reject an appointment they dislike?

In FiveThirtyEight's wrapup of their Kavanaugh hearing coverage, one writer said (emphasis mine): Second, in this difficult and circular path, the fundamental process of confirmation to the Supreme ...
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Why do the supreme court justices have a life term period?

The justices of the Supreme Court of the United States is composed by chief justices which have a life-term period on that position after they are "elected". I have always asked to myself why some ...
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What criteria is used for a Supreme Court nomination while in Senate Judiciary Committee?

I have a policies and procedures question. I've been watching Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation hearing with the Senate Judiciary Committee on television. I'm having a hard time finding reading on the ...
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Supreme Court cases that were harbingers of New Federalism

Between the mid-1930s and late 1980s/mid-1990s the Supreme Court didn't invalidate any acts by Congress during the era of New Deal Federalism, but under the Rehnquist Court a revival of Federalism ...
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If Kavanaugh is confirmed, can he still be removed later?

Let's say that Kavanaugh is confirmed by the Senate. Then after that the FBI (or relevant police authority) decide there is enough evidence to investigate sexual assault claims against him and ...
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Why are SCOTUS appointee Senate hearings not mandatory?

Of the 29 failed Supreme Court appointees, there seem to have only been two that didn't have Senate hearings, one being Merrick Garland (Barack Obama's nominee), whose nomination expired on January ...
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Isn't the question of partisanship of US supreme court judges contradictory to the separation of powers?

Being German I find it rather strange to witness the discussion in the US regarding placing Kavanaugh as the 9th judge in the supreme court. In the news it always sounds as if it is a matter of the ...
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1answer
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Can a lame duck Senate confirm a SCOTUS nominee?

Given that a number of reasons for delaying a vote on confirmation of Judge Kavanaugh to the SCOTUS have come up, it may happen that they will not be resolved until after the mid-term elections will ...
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What kind of documents are being requested in the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearing?

In the (currently on-going) Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearing there is some disagreement about which documents should be released; this answer gives a good overview of the situation. Quoting from ...
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Why does the US Supreme Court work this way?

Sorry for the non-descriptive title, but while I was typing a more descriptive one I realized it was going to be overly long. My understanding of the USSC appointments is that they are for life only ...
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Why did the Supreme Court decide to disregard the prefatory clause of the 2nd amendment?

In order to better explain my incredulity, let me start with a simple legal thought experiment: Suppose there is a law that states "Driving near schools at speeds above 25mph is prohibited." Now, an ...
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Period evidence to refute the decision of Baron V Baltimore

In 1833, the decision of Baron v Baltimore established the concept that the Bill of Rights were not applicable to the States. Is there evidence from the ratification debates or debate conventions ...
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Abstaining from Senate vote on Supreme Court nominee

What would be the effect of an abstention vote by four US senators on a question of whether to confirm a Supreme Court nominee, if the result were that there were only 49 votes in favor of confirming ...
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Do political ties in any way disqualify a supreme court nominee?

I'm guessing the answer is nothing out of the ordinary, because I've heard talk of former governors being proposed as supreme court justices, but I've found some of the things I've heard on Brett ...
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Why didn't Barack Obama try to force the Senate to hold hearings on SCOTUS nominee Merrick Garland?

US Constitution Article 2 says this about the appointments to the Supreme Court: [the President] shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint (...) Judges ...
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Why wasn't Elena Kagan's lack of *judicial* experience an issue?

Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States Elena Kagan held the job of Solicitor General at the time she was nominated to the Supreme Court by Barack Obama. Her legal bona fides ...
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Hostile answers during US Supreme Court Senate confirmation hearings

My question is: Does it help or hinder to answer questions with hostility during United States Supreme Court Senate confirmation hearings? There are many examples in real life where a senate asks ...
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How often do Supreme Court decisions hinge upon the split between progressive and conservative judges?

How many decisions of the Supreme Court end up in a tight spot between judges considered to be "progressive" and those considered to be "conservative"? I know that 5-4 decisions are rare in the first ...
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Is it known who replaces whom on SCOTUS if there are two vacancies?

Speculation is that Clarence Thomas may also retire while Republicans hold the Presidency, presumably to ensure his replacement is a Republican-appointed Judge. Let's assume that happens soon, and ...
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1answer
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Junior Justice's Tenure on the US Supreme Court

The junior Justice, defined as the newest member to the ranks of Associates, on the USSC is required by tradition to perform menial tasks like open the door during conference sessions and serve on the ...
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Why did the Supreme Court consider the Obamacare Medicaid expansion coercion?

As part of Obamacare's efforts to expand access to healthcare, it included an expansion of Medicaid. Medicaid is a program that receives some federal funding, but it's administered by the individual ...
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What scope does Title I Fisa have as it pertains to other US citizens not explicitly targeted by the warrant?

Suppose that the FBI obtains a Title I FISA warrant on a John Doe. That is they argue successfully before a FISA judge that there is probable cause to believe that John Doe is a foreign agent. This ...
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Why doesn't a conservative majority SCOTUS repeal Roe v. Wade?

I'm ignorant of the judicial branch, and I have a question, which I would like answered irrespective of the "pro-choice" or "pro-life" debate and focused on the workings of the courts. Given that ...
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Provisional Ballots in Ohio and the Larry Harmon case

The US Supreme court is hearing arguments over the state rights to purge voter rolls. The case arises from an Ohio voter (Larry Harmon) who was purged from the voter rolls. My first question is a ...
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How did Wickard v. Filburn affect future Supreme Court decisions?

In 1942, the Supreme Court ruled in Wickard v. Filburn that the Commerce Clause gives the United States federal government authority to regulate wheat production, even if that production is for ...
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Supreme Court alternates as tie prevention measure

Sometimes when a Supreme Court Justice is out sick, or there's only an even number of Justices currently appointed, the Court makes a tie decision, (which may result in accepting a lower court's ...
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Could a lengthy enough political gridlock entirely depopulate the Supreme Court?

A logical extreme based on Can congress be sued for prolonging the nomination of a Supreme Court Justice?. First suppose Congress cannot be sued from prolonging the nomination of a Supreme Court ...
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Supreme court case for disqualifying from rights

In a discussion I had recently about gun rights, someone brought up a United States Supreme Court case in which it was determined that an individual could become disqualified from particular rights. ...
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Why is the efficiency gap (to measure Gerrymandering) higher when the voter repartition is perfectly uniform?

The efficiency gap, as explained in Stephanopoulos and McGhee (2015), measures Gerrymandering using the notion of wasted votes (see a quick overview at How the Efficiency Gap Works (PDF)). This ...
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1answer
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What political influences contributed to the Supreme Court's decision to overrule precedent in Afroyim v Rusk?

In Afroyim v Rusk the court ruled that US citizens may not be deprived of their citizenship involuntarily. A previous precedent (Perez v. Brownell) had made the possibility of possessing dual ...
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Why aren't there upper-age limits for government officials in the US?

Why aren't there upper-age limits for serving on the Supreme Court or as the President of the United States? What if while in office one of these officials starts to develop dementia or some other ...
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What happens if all of the Supreme Court seats are empty and the President fails to appoint anyone?

Let's say if all of the Supreme Court justices resigned and the seats are empty. Is the president required to appoint someone? What happens if he does nothing?