Disagreement is the core of our democracy. It fuels Congressional debates which set forth policy, leads to passionate debates between presidential candidates, and ultimately allows people with different ideas to unify under one government. Separate from these ideological differences and massive arguments, supposedly, is the court system. In the views of a constrained court, judges don’t make laws, they only enforce their rules in compliance with the Constitution. However, as is clearly evident in the court case Windsor v United States, the Constitution in itself is vague, complicated, and often open to interpretation. In effect, the United States’ courts revolve around applying very few concepts to thousands of disputes. As the …show more content…
Windsor filed a suit arguing the Defense of Marriage Act was unconstitutional, which eventually reached the Supreme Court, resulting in a 5-4 decision. The majority opinion argued that the Defense of Marriage Act operated in effect to single out one group of people, those of same-sex marriages. Accordingly, the act deprived only some legally recognized couples of the rights and responsibilities which were allowed to other legally recognized couples, thus denying these couples the right to the equal protection of the law as stated in the 14th amendment. The dissents of the ruling were interesting, but perhaps the most compelling arguments were that the right to same-sex marriage was not a guarantee by the Constitution, and that the majority’s accusations towards the legislative and executive branches created a judicial superiority. Clearly this culturally significant court case represents the ideas of a dynamic court view. In one fell swoop the Court was able to deny an already passed law based purely on their judgement of the Constitution, so it’s important to note how their judgements fell into distinct groups. The decision was split definitively across ideological lines, with the five liberal justices voting as the majority. This split makes it hard to believe that their decisions were
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The role of the Judicial Branch of the United States has been the most dynamic throughout the Nation’s history. By adopting the power of judicial review in Marbury v. Madison in 1803, the Supreme Court established its position as being arguably the most powerful branch of Federal Government. However, this also made the Judiciary’s role the most controversial. Should the Court be required to interpret the constitution strictly through the language it contains? Does the Court have the right to overturn morals legislation? Through analyzing court cases like Lawrence v. Texas, one can gain insight on the role of the Supreme Court and how it fits within the confines of the United States Government.
In summary of these, the Obergefell V Hodges has received opposition as well as propositions at different degrees, but the majority of the debaters’ are the proposing side. The main idea here was to legalize the Same-sex marriage which had been prohibited in the previous court rulings (Siegel, 2015). The proposing team was emphasizing on the following factors; the right to personal choices as clarified in the human dignity, the right to intimate association, marriage as a foundation of the American social order and the ability to sustain and safeguard children and families (Siegel, 2015).
The position of the Supreme Court in American society is quite simple: to interpret the Constitution and settle case disputes with the limitations that are binded by our law. While one perspective of the debate states that the court is unbending in their ability to make policy, while the other claims that the court breaks free from these limitations that are binded by our law and are politically dynamic in nature.These are known as The dynamic court and the constrained court are two alternative constructions of the role of U.S. courts in producing significant social reform (Rosenberg, 1991). The balance of these two views rely on the interaction between doctrinal,
Nevertheless, some critics argue that the judidicary, some critics argue that the judiciary are the final arbiters of what is meant by the principle of separation of powers, which therefore provides the judiciary with subordinate levels of power. Moreover Chief Justice Hughes concluding that the ‘Constitution is what the judges say it is’ due to ability to interpret the constitution. In America, although Congress may new laws affecting courts, ultimately judges decide.
On June 26, 2015, the US Supreme Court ruled that the US Constitution guarantees the right for same-sex couples to marry. Many conservative groups do NOT agree with this decision. The gay marriage debate has been simmering for as long as I can remember. The four articles I have selected give information from four different perspectives including that of liberals, conservatives, homosexuals, and orthodox Jews. With so many differing opinions, one can understand why it's been so hard for the nation to come to agree on this issue.
During his opening statement, Scalia employs rhetorical questions in order to elucidate that Americans’ lack of knowledge of the government forces judges to firmly abide by the United States’ unparalleled Constitution. He postulates, “How many of you have read the Federalist Papers?” The reality that “never more than about 5%” of his audience, who are “interested in the law,” has delved deep into the document portrays them as ignorant. With this concern, Scalia expounds upon his originalist ideals and encourages rivaling judges to alter their opinions of a flexible Constitution. Scalia credits his argument through the Framers who illustrated the significance of the Constitution in the Federalist Papers. Due to the fact that Americans are incapable of thoroughly interpreting the government, he attests that judges must abide by the precise words of the Constitution. Scalia advises his audience to
Jan Greenburg is a Legal Communicator for the ABC news. In this book she tells explains about nine different interviews she has had with high political leaders. The leaders range from Justices to the white house. This book basically takes the outside and inside view of how the court has changed over time. Court has changed over time with mainly communal problems such as: faith, ethnicity and illegal processes. Jan talks about how some of the court has basically used itself to gain power through these communal problems. This is really useful when it comes down to it, because it lets the reader realize that the court does not always give proper justice. There are numerous conflicts in the Supreme Court. People always want power, and some
Since the founding of the American Democracy, partisanship has always been a major problem when it comes to political aspects of the law. The Constitution was designed to implement laws into our country that would make our governing body run smoother with fewer conflicts. However, when dealing with Democracy based on the “people’s word” it is hard to avoid such conflicts. Since each citizen in our country has the right to freedom of speech and thought, the interpretation of various parts of the Constitution have become heavily analyzed when dealing with cases of various crimes that happen in the United States. Each judge on the Supreme Court is entitled to his or her own political ideology so it is a constant debate as to whether a judge has biases on a particular issue based on political views. These biases weave through our justice system creating a disarray of views and arguments that always reflect back on the judges and their presentation, or lack their of, of American ways.
On June 26th, 2013, a Supreme Court case occurred dealing with a same-sex couple, Mrs. Edith Windsor and Thea Spyer. It was until they both got married in Ontario, Canada in 2007 and returned to the U.S to a home they had in New York City. Later in their years, Thea had passed away in 2009. Thea left the home estate to Windsor. The estate tax exemption was freely opened to Windsor to claim from the surviving spouses. Although, Windsor was not entitled to the estate tax discharge, because by federal law, was sought as the Defense of Marriage Act, bypasses the definition of a same-sex partner and ‘spouse’. Even after hearing that, Windsor paid her taxes for it, but eventually filed a suit to battle the constitutionality of the endowment. To the situation occurring, the United States District Courts as well as the Court of Appeals has reigned that the federal law to
The first part of this essay will provide a brief insight into the history of the Supreme Court, the original intentions of the founding fathers and a discussion on how they idealized the relationship between politics and the law. The second section will explore how the contemporary process to which judges are appointed has become significantly influenced by politics. The third section will discuss how the Supreme Court overstepped its boundaries on constitutional interpretation in the Roe v. Wade case. The final section will unpack the importance of partisanship and ideological politics and discuss how it impacts the function of the Justices in their
The case Obergefell vs. Hodges reached the United States Supreme Court in 2015 (Oyez). This case dealt with the rights of same-sex marriages and became important case in our nation’s young history and in our society in general. The problem was groups of same-sex couples were being told that their marriage licenses were not being upheld to the same legal standards as those of heterogeneous couples. Therefore same-sex couples in Ohio, Tennessee , Kentucky, and Michigan went and sued these agencies in challenge of their constitutional rights (Oyez).They took their issue to court because they believed that the states were denying them their 14th amendment rights without due process. They couldn’t understand why their marriages license were not
NPR’s legal affairs correspondent, Nina Totenberg, described a “horrible political storm” brewing over the Supreme Court of the United States (“CNN,” 2016, p. 1). While reporting for CNN, Totenberg used these words to draw attention to the untimely death of Justice Antonin Scalia in an era of modern politics in which the court has become more polarized than ever. The Supreme Court, the highest court of the land, is not only being severely impacted by partisan ties, but is now also deciding cases according to these biased beliefs. The Democratic and Republican parties, after corrupting and encroaching upon the federal judiciary, have made court nominations and rulings into a game of party politics, inevitably destroying the impartiality of the
In the case of US v Windsor, Edith Windsor and Thea Spyer were married in Toronto, Canada in 2007, where a same-sex marriage were legal and was recognized by New York state law. When in 2009, Thea died. Spyer left her estate to her spouse, and because their marriage was not recognized by federal law. The government imposed a tax of $363,000. If their marriage was recognized, the estate would have qualified for a marital exemption, and no taxes would have been imposed. On November 9, 2010 Windsor filed suit in district court seeking a declaration that the Defense of Marriage Act was unconstitutional. The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), enacted in 1996, states that, for the purposes of federal law, the words “marriage” and “spouse” refer to legal
The argument brought before the Supreme Court was to eliminate the ban on same sex marriage that was still held by thirteen states. This was done as part of a lawsuit called Obergefell versus Hodges. Court documents outline that, “14 same-sex couples and two men whose same-sex partners are deceased, filed suits in Federal District Courts in their home States, claiming that respondent state officials violate the Fourteenth Amendment by denying them the right to marry or to have marriages lawfully performed in another State given full recognition.” (United States Court of Appeals)
According to DOMA, “In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, or of any ruling, regulation, or interpretation of the various administrative bureaus and agencies of the United States, the word 'marriage' means only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife, and the word 'spouse' refers only to a person of the opposite sex who is a husband or a wife” (sec 3). Until recently 2013, the US Supreme Court finally delivered the verdict that declared section 3 of the DOMA, which is the rejection of right to gay marriage is unconstitutional (Shapiro 208). In “Gay Marriage Is A Fundamental Right” by Nathan Goetting, “The right to many, and to marry the person of one's choice, is a fundamental right and a necessary aspect of human happiness. This has been an explicitly stated abiding principle since the Court used its power of judicial review to strike down as unconstitutional a legislature's definition of marriage in 1967.” Currently, 17 states in the United States have legalized the right to same sex marriage. The realization of DOMA is unconstitutional has further evidenced that gay marriage is one of the civil right that should not be taken away by the government, and it is an inevitable changes that open doors for equality and equity.