Landmark Decisions of the Supreme Court

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  1. If a law conflicts with the constitution, the court must go with the constitution. Established judicial review - power to declare laws unconstitutional
    Marbury v. Madison
  2. Georgia couldn't revoke a land grant after it was sold to 3rd party. Contracts, including sales agreements, protected by constitution 
    Fletcher v. Peck
  3. Constitution gives both implied and explicit powers to Congress. Implied powers are necessary to carry out express powers. Taxing Bank of US, etc
    McCulloch v. Maryland
  4. N. Hampshire couldn't alter a royal charter and make the institution a state college. Charters are contracts, which are protected constitutionally from state interference; Daniel Webster
    Dartmouth College v. Maryland
  5. The president exceeded his power by siezing control of the steel mills during Korean War, even to prevent strike
    Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. v. Sawyer
  6. President can't withhold evidence during a criminal trial. The president's executive privilege and privacy isn't unlimited.
    United States v. Nixon
  7. No president can be sued for damages caused by any official action while in office. Applies to civil suits, not criminal prosecutions, etc
    Fitzgerald v. Nixon
  8. Powers of the federal government superior to states' in all matters of interstate commerce.
    Gibbons v. Ogden
  9. Law limiting bakers to a 60-hour week was unconstitutional because it violated "freedom of contract"
    Lochner v. New York
  10. The Natl. Industrial Recovery Act of 1933 (provided fair-competition business codes) was unconstitutional
    Schechter v. United States
  11. Citizens can challenge unfair distribution of state legislative seats before federal court.
    Baker v. Carr
  12. U.S. House of Reps. and both houses of state legislatures must follow "one person, one vote" paradigm. Election districts must be approx. equal in population.
    Reynolds v. Sims
  13. The government can restrict freedom of speech in cases of "clear and present danger."
    Schenck v. United States
  14. Freedom of the press protects obscene materials that met certain standards.
    Roth v. United States
  15. A newspaper can't be punished for untrue statements about public officials unless it deliberately printed the falsehood.
    New York Times Co. v. Sullivan
  16. The government can't punish a person for advocating ideas.
    Brandenburg v. Ohio
  17. Material can be considered obscene if it fulfills certain court-established requirements
    Miller v. California
  18. The government can't punish people for burning the U.S. Flag in peaceful protest
    Texas v. Johnson
  19. Public schools can't require prayer recitations
    Engel v. Vitale
  20. A city or town can include a creche (Nativity scene) in its Christmas display
    Lynch v. Donnelly
  21. Military can't try civilians outside military areas if civil courts are available
    Ex Parte Milligan
  22. Evidence obtained by illegal means is inadmissable in criminal trials
    Mapp v. Ohio
  23. States must provide free counsel to any accused felons if they can't afford a lawyer.
    Gideon v. Wainwright
  24. Accused persons must be informed of various constitutional rights before being questioned.
    Miranda v. Arizona
  25. States must provide free legal counsel to people accused of misdemeanors that are facing jail if they can't afford a lawyer
    Argersinger v. Hamlin
  26. Death penalty (as of 1972) was unconstitutional by 8th and 14tth amendments.
    Furman v. Georgia
  27. Death penalty is constitutional when statutes adequetely guide its use.
    Gregg v. Georgia
  28. Blacks could not be US citizens and Congress couldn't prohibit slavery in US territories. Overturned by 13th/14th amendments.
    Dred Scott v. Sandford
  29. "Separate but equal" public facilities based on race were constitutional. Reversed in 1954.
    Plessy v. Fergueson
  30. Government could lawfully remove persons of Japanese ancestry from areas threatened by Japanese attack during WWII
    Korematsu v. United States
  31. State or federal courts can't enforce restrictive covenants (agreements to prevent real-estate discrimination)
    Shelley v. Kraemer
  32. Separate but equal facilities are unconstitutional, esp. in the public school setting
    Brown v. Board (of Education of Topeka)
  33. States can't prohibit woman's right to abortion during first trimester and may do so only in certain circumstances during second trimester. May prohibit abortion if the fetus is viable.
    Roe v. Wade
  34. University admissions departments can't use specific quotas to achieve racial balance, but they may give special consideration to minority groups
    Regents of Univ. of Calif. v. Bakke
  35. States may outlaw abortions in public hospitals and clinics and prohibit public employees from assisting. May also require tests to determine if fetus is viable.
    Webster v. Reproductive Health Services
  36. States may not forbid laws that are designed to protect homosexuals from discrimination
    Romer v. Evans
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Landmark Decisions of the Supreme Court
2012-10-30 19:54:10

Court cases for 10/31/2012
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