I. THE CONSTITUTION
A. Article I – The legislature
· Specific enumerated powers of Congress
· Lay and collect taxes
· Spend for the general welfare
· Borrow money
· Provide for national defense
· Declare war
· Regulate interstate and foreign commerce
· Coin money, regulate money supply
· Establish a uniform system of weights and measures
· Regulate immigration
· Regulate bankruptcy
· Establish a postal service
· Regulate patents and copyrights
· Establish federal courts
· Regulate military reservations and the district of Columbia
· Necessary and proper clause gives Congress the opportunity to use any means available to execute its enumerated powers
B. Article II – The Executive
· Power to veto or sign bills
· Executing the laws
· Appointing judges, diplomats and other officers
· Acting as Commander in Chief
C. Article III – The Judiciary
· See below
D. Article IV
· Guarantee clause – the federal government has the responsibility to guarantee a republican form of government. States are prohibited from electing nobility.
· Full Faith and Credit – States must recognize the laws of other states. Issue, does a marriage between same sex marriages have to be recognized by another state?
E. Article V – Amending the Constitution
· The standard route, two thirds of congress, and three-fourths of states legislatures
· The other route, the legislatures of two thirds of the states call for a convention and the amendments are ratified by three fourths of the states legislatures.
F. Article VI
· The Supremacy Clause – Federal law preempts state law. Contradictory state laws are nullified by federal law and treaties.
Federalism – The powers of the national government are limited to those enumerated in the Constitution
Supremacy Clause à Preemption
Necessary and Proper Clause à IS NOT AN INDEPENDENT POWER, only one enabling the selection of the means to achieved a specified power.
II. The Role of the Supreme Court in the Constitution
1. Judicial Review
& Marbury v. Madison, 5 U.S. (1 Cranch) 137 (1803). (F) Outgoing President John Adams appointed Marbury as a Jusitice of the peace. Jefferson refused to deliver the commissions of the justices appointed by Adams. (P) Marbury petitions a writ of mandamus to the Supreme Court, to deliver the commission. Marshall, J
Congress Authority to Control Supreme Court
· Article III allows Congress to establish lower federal courts and presumably dispense with them
& Ex Parte McCardle, 74 U.S. 506 (1869)
Ø Congress can remove jurisdiction over the Court even if a case is pending
Ø Congress cannot eliminate the Court’s jurisdiction in a way that violates the Constitution
B. Courts Authority to Compel The Executive
· Can the Court compel the President to do something?
· Policy considerations –
· President may ignore the order, and render the court powerless because the executive enforces the courts orders.
· If the court is allowed to order the executive branch to do something, there power would be expanded.
· Court does not take the power to compel the executive but takes the power of judicial review.
The president is susceptible to an order of the court, because they must obey the law, even though the Supreme Court never issued an order in Marbury.