Questions tagged [supreme-court]

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

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What have countries with similar court systems to the US done to make the Supreme Court less political?

The US Supreme Court is quite politicized. Towards the end of Barack Obama’s term, the Republican Senate stopped any consideration of Merrick Garland; Gorsuch was confirmed with only three Democrats' ...
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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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What requirements are there for becoming a supreme court justice?

Can the president appoint anyone as a supreme court justice? What requirements are there for becoming a supreme court justice? Do you need to be a lawyer or not?
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Is there historical precedent for the US Senate to confirm a SCOTUS nominee from a POTUS of their own party in an election year?

There is debate over whether it is right for Donald Trump to try to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the SCOTUS now, because the election is coming up. Republican Senator Mitt Romney said he will still ...
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How is number of justices determined if the US Supreme Court is expanded?

For the sake of argument, let's say that the US Senate, House, and Presidency are won by the same party; and they decide to pack the court. How is the number of judges in the Supreme Court decided? Is ...
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Could the SCOTUS void a Presidential Pardon?

Would it be possible for the Supreme Court of the United States to void a Presidential Pardon? If so how would they do it? If not why?
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Has a US Supreme Court Justice ever drafted a bill and submitted it to Congress?

Argentina's Constitution was heavily inspired by the US Constitution. Recently, the biggest piece of Argentine legislation passed in decades was authored by the members of Argentina's Supreme Court, ...
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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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What is the "Biden rule" mentioned during the nomination of Merrick Garland to the US Supreme Court?

In 2016, during the nomination of Justice Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court many Republicans cited the "Biden rule" to justify denying him a hearing. What is the truth behind this so-...
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Why hasn't the Supreme Court found the Hatch Act unconstitutional?

The Hatch Act is a law that was passed in 1939. It says that Cabinet employees as well as other non-presidential Executive Branch members cannot talk about candidate-specific issues among other things....
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What is the US Supreme Court case with the highest number of US states party to the case?

Sometimes US Supreme Court cases have had more than one US state as a party, e.g. in Massachusetts v. EPA The petitioners were the states of California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, ...
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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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Why did the Supreme Court decide to disregard the prefatory clause of the 2nd amendment? [closed]

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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How did US Supreme court Justice John Roberts "let it be known" that he did not wish to preside over the 2nd presidential impeachment?

NPR.org's Sen. Patrick Leahy To Preside Over Trump's Senate Impeachment Trial says: Chief Justice John Roberts presided over Trump's first impeachment trial, but now that Trump is a former president, ...
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What are the details of the Republican healthcare plan described by Trump in mid-July 2020?

Appearing on the 'Fox News Sunday' show on July 19th, giving an interview (transcript) with Chris Wallace, President Trump gave the following response to a question about his administration's actions ...
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What are the bottlenecks in the US Supreme Court appointment process?

Here are the steps as I understand them and then questions to which I have not found answers. Process The President nominates a candidate for the Supreme Court. A subset of the Senate (called the ...
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Majority Opinion of Supreme Court cases

I am learning about US Government and the Judicial Branch. According to my course lesson, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court will write the majority opinion if he is part of the majority or assign ...
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Why Is The U.S. Supreme Court Reviewing So Few Cases On The Merits?

The U.S. Supreme Court in recent years has been deciding fewer cases on the merits than it has at any time since the end of the U.S. Civil War. (Source) Yet, the volume of cases eligible for its ...
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Did Susan Collins explain why she voted against Amy Coney Barrett's nomination?

Susan Collins of Maine was the only Republican who voted against Amy Coney Barrett's nomination to the Supreme Court. Has she explained why she did so?
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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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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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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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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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Is the US Attorney General expected to defend policies his party opposes in the Supreme Court?

I've been led to believe that the Attorney General is the US government's lawyer in the Supreme Court. On the other hand a lot of federal policies are going to be inherited from a previous ...
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Did the Supreme Court have a time limit on responding to Texas v Pennsylvania et. al?

In the lawsuit filed by Texas against Pennsylvania and other states, SCOTUS did request the defendants to respond by December 10, 2020, but they did not say until December 11 that they were not going ...
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Is an expansion of the US Supreme Court really possible?

With the confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett, the idea of expanding the US Supreme Court has caught fire among some Democrats. With a 6-3 conservative majority on the court, prominent progressive ...
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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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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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Can the Supreme Court strike down an impeachment that wasn’t for ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’ or is Congress the sole judge?

If an impeachment for something clearly not a ‘high crime or misdemeanor’ were to go though for example for increasing tariffs, would the Supreme Court have the power to overturn their judgement?
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Why is nobody in the Amy Coney Barrett hearings wearing masks?

I was watching the Amy Coney Barrett hearings yesterday (October 12; today is October 13th 2020), and I noticed how none of the senators present were wearing masks. In her address, Kamala Harris, ...
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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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Can the Senate wait until the election and then confirm the president's Supreme Court nominee?

Currently the Republican held Senate has vowed to block any Supreme Court nominee by President Obama. The president recently nominated Merrick Garland. Merrick is fairly moderate and, while he's no ...
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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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Did the supreme court overrule the monarch?

We heard that the Supreme Court not only decided that the Prime Minister's advice to the Queen was unlawful, but that the prorogation was therefore void: it didn't happen, Parliament was not prorogued....
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Could a President withdraw nominated Supreme Court judge before confirmation by the senate?

Can a president withdraw a candidate for the Supreme Court before he or she is confirmed by the senate. For instance, could Donald Trump (in theory) withdraw his support and nomination of Neil Gorsuch ...
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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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Equal rights for Lesbian or Gay couples without "redefining" marriage

What is the mindset of the people who support equal civil rights for homosexuals but disagree with Obergefell v. Hodges because it redefines the word "marriage", which they believe is a sacred thing ...
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Does Amy Coney Barrett’s record suggest she would vote to overturn Obergefell v. Hodges?

Quoted in Bloomberg after the first day of Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation hearing: Democratic Senator Chris Coons of Delaware said Barrett’s confirmation could endanger Supreme Court precedents ...
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Why aren't the justices of the Supreme Court of the United States democratically elected?

Related: Doesn't the system of the Supreme Court oppose justice? and Why is the debate on the composition of the U.S. Supreme Court so politicised? In following the aftermath of Justice Ruth Bader ...
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Why has the Supreme Court of the United States not used its power of judicial review to audit constitutionally-questionable laws like the Patriot Act?

I've heard it said that it is very difficult for some terrorism-related laws like the Patriot Act or laws that allow warrantless dragnet surveillance of citizens to be fully challenged in the courts ...
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Buckley v. Valeo / Citizens United

What is the difference in 1) background and 2) implications of the supreme Court cases Buckley v. Valeo and Citizens United v. FEC? The sources I've read make them sound pretty similar, but obviously ...
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Supreme Court Justice Appointment Time Frame

When a Supreme Court Justice dies, how long before a new Justice is appointed per the law or the way that typically works (and a history reference of such an event for comparison)? I hear this talk ...
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Which President has had the greatest number of their actions ruled unconstitutional?

Abraham Lincoln suspended habeas corpus and the court ruled that it wasn’t within his authority, I am wondering which President did the most things that the Supreme Court explicitly ruled were ...
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Argument for why the electoral clause was not violated by balloting changes related to Covid-19

The electoral clause (article II, section I, clause 2) of the U.S. constitution states: Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to ...
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What are the types of decisions of the Supreme Court that can be overruled by the U.S. Congress?

What are the types of decisions of the Supreme Court that can be overruled by Congress? In some countries, when the Supreme Court makes decision on any matter, it cannot be reversed by any lower ...
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Is the SCOTUS confirmation hearing anything more than a grandstanding opportunity?

I listened to the first day of Senate confirmation hearings today for SCOTUS nominee Amy Coney Barrett. Today was just the opening statements by all the members of the Judiciary Committee, and nothing ...
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Constitutionality of the Income Tax

There is a growing movement in the United States of Americans that call into question the constitutionality of the Federal Income tax in the modern age. Understanding that the income tax first came ...
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If a US Supreme Court Justice is physically unable to work, are any mechanisms in place to choose their successor?

There have been a few justices in the past that have "gone off their rockers" in the last few years of their careers, but from what I understand, unless they retire, they couldn't be replaced. But ...
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CISA: Do we lose 4th Amendment rights when we share?

The passage of CISA in its present form would give immunities to corporations that surrender users' personal information. Those who oppose passage of the bill often site the 4th Amendment, namely that ...
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Why do SCOTUS judges generally try to at least *appear* apolitical?

SCOTUS justices in particular usually try to put on a veil of being impartial by not endorsing presidential candidates or directly involving themselves in political discussions unless it is ...