Briefing Cases Lowering Court Paper
Order ID 53563633773 Type Essay Writer Level Masters Style APA Sources/References 4 Perfect Number of Pages to Order 5-10 Pages
Briefing Cases Lowering Court Paper
(Adapted from David M. O’Brien, University of Virginia, 1998)
You will understand the cases and constitutional issues contained therein and do much better on your exams if you have access to a brief synopsis and analysis of the assigned case law. This is best done by following a set pattern when briefing cases. While there is no single, accepted way for briefing a case, the following seven-step example is one way it might be done. You should ALWAYS read the case in its entirety first before beginning your brief.
- Title and Citation:Marbury v. Madison, 1 Cranch (5 U.S.) 137 (1803).
- Facts: A brief statement identifying the parties and/or circumstances that led to the controversy and the lower court holding.
Outgoing President John Adams commissioned fellow Federalist party member William Marbury to serve as a Justice of the Peace for the District of Columbia. His nomination was confirmed by the Senate, but the commission appointing him was never delivered by Adams’ Secretary of State, John Marshall.
When President Jefferson came into office, he directed his new Secretary of State, James Madison, not to deliver Marbury’s commission. Marbury petitioned the Court (and its new Chief Justice, John Marshall) to issue a writ of mandamus ordering Madison to deliver the commission, consistent with the provisions of Section 13 of the Judiciary Act of 1789 which empowered the Court to issue such writs.
- Legal Question (s) Presented:What is the nature of the conflict the Court must resolve? The legal question(s) is (are) often stated by the Court at the beginning of its opinion. You should answer each question presented with a “yes” or “no,” reflecting the Court’s consideration of that question.
A). Has Marbury a right to his commission? Yes; B) If a right has been violated do the laws afford a remedy? Yes.
C). Is the Court the legal body to afford such a remedy? No; D) Can the Court declare a law unconstitutional? Yes.
- Opinion of the Court:The opinion refers to the legal reasoning which the Court offers as a justification for its holding. The Court’s reasoning often follows the order in which the legal questions are presented. You might find it helpful to outline the Court’s opinion.
A). Completion of the appointment process establishes that Marbury has a clear legal right to his commission.
B). Authorities such as Blackstone’s Commentaries show that where there is a legal right there must be a legal remedy. B1) Madison violated Marbury’s right and thus a remedy is due Marbury.
C). The Court, however, cannot provide the remedy requested since that would require an expansion of its original jurisdiction as detailed in Article III of the Constitution; C1) Congress cannot expand or add to the Court’s original jurisdiction in violation of Article III. Section 13 of the Judiciary Act of 1789 appears to have enlarged the Court’s power by giving it the power to issue writs of mandamus.
- D) The Court has the power to declare a law unconstitutional because 1) of the Supremacy Clause of Article VI; and 2) the Congress cannot enlarge the Court’s original jurisdiction; D1) It is the duty of the Courts to say what “the law is” since 1) judges take an oath to uphold the Constitution; 2) the Constitution specifies that a law repugnant to the Constitution is void; and 3) the Court’s power extends to ALL cases and controversies under the Constitution.
- Holding:The Supreme Court’s ruling and whether it affirms or reverses the lower court’s decision.
Section 13 of the Judiciary Act of 1789 (giving the Court the authority to grant writs of mandamus) is unconstitutional.
- Separate Opinions:Both concurring (those that agree with the Court’s holding) and dissenting (those that disagree) opinions should be noted and their major points emphasized.
There were no separate opinions filed in Marbury.
- Comments and Evaluation:A statement of the case’s legal, historical, and political importance as well as criticisms of the justices’ opinions and reasoning.
1) Marshall obviously should have disqualified himself from participating in this case. 2) The case should have been remanded to a lower court since the Court had no original jurisdiction in this area. 3) Marshall’s reading of Section 13 is open to criticism. 4) The case asserts the power of judicial review but not judicial supremacy as some Court critics have claimed.
Briefing Cases Lowering Court Paper
QUALITY OF RESPONSE NO RESPONSE POOR / UNSATISFACTORY SATISFACTORY GOOD EXCELLENT Content (worth a maximum of 50% of the total points) Zero points: Student failed to submit the final paper. 20 points out of 50: The essay illustrates poor understanding of the relevant material by failing to address or incorrectly addressing the relevant content; failing to identify or inaccurately explaining/defining key concepts/ideas; ignoring or incorrectly explaining key points/claims and the reasoning behind them; and/or incorrectly or inappropriately using terminology; and elements of the response are lacking. 30 points out of 50: The essay illustrates a rudimentary understanding of the relevant material by mentioning but not full explaining the relevant content; identifying some of the key concepts/ideas though failing to fully or accurately explain many of them; using terminology, though sometimes inaccurately or inappropriately; and/or incorporating some key claims/points but failing to explain the reasoning behind them or doing so inaccurately. Elements of the required response may also be lacking. 40 points out of 50: The essay illustrates solid understanding of the relevant material by correctly addressing most of the relevant content; identifying and explaining most of the key concepts/ideas; using correct terminology; explaining the reasoning behind most of the key points/claims; and/or where necessary or useful, substantiating some points with accurate examples. The answer is complete. 50 points: The essay illustrates exemplary understanding of the relevant material by thoroughly and correctly addressing the relevant content; identifying and explaining all of the key concepts/ideas; using correct terminology explaining the reasoning behind key points/claims and substantiating, as necessary/useful, points with several accurate and illuminating examples. No aspects of the required answer are missing. Use of Sources (worth a maximum of 20% of the total points). Zero points: Student failed to include citations and/or references. Or the student failed to submit a final paper. 5 out 20 points: Sources are seldom cited to support statements and/or format of citations are not recognizable as APA 6th Edition format. There are major errors in the formation of the references and citations. And/or there is a major reliance on highly questionable. The Student fails to provide an adequate synthesis of research collected for the paper. 10 out 20 points: References to scholarly sources are occasionally given; many statements seem unsubstantiated. Frequent errors in APA 6th Edition format, leaving the reader confused about the source of the information. There are significant errors of the formation in the references and citations. And/or there is a significant use of highly questionable sources. 15 out 20 points: Credible Scholarly sources are used effectively support claims and are, for the most part, clear and fairly represented. APA 6th Edition is used with only a few minor errors. There are minor errors in reference and/or citations. And/or there is some use of questionable sources. 20 points: Credible scholarly sources are used to give compelling evidence to support claims and are clearly and fairly represented. APA 6th Edition format is used accurately and consistently. The student uses above the maximum required references in the development of the assignment. Grammar (worth maximum of 20% of total points) Zero points: Student failed to submit the final paper. 5 points out of 20: The paper does not communicate ideas/points clearly due to inappropriate use of terminology and vague language; thoughts and sentences are disjointed or incomprehensible; organization lacking; and/or numerous grammatical, spelling/punctuation errors 10 points out 20: The paper is often unclear and difficult to follow due to some inappropriate terminology and/or vague language; ideas may be fragmented, wandering and/or repetitive; poor organization; and/or some grammatical, spelling, punctuation errors 15 points out of 20: The paper is mostly clear as a result of appropriate use of terminology and minimal vagueness; no tangents and no repetition; fairly good organization; almost perfect grammar, spelling, punctuation, and word usage. 20 points: The paper is clear, concise, and a pleasure to read as a result of appropriate and precise use of terminology; total coherence of thoughts and presentation and logical organization; and the essay is error free. Structure of the Paper (worth 10% of total points) Zero points: Student failed to submit the final paper. 3 points out of 10: Student needs to develop better formatting skills. The paper omits significant structural elements required for and APA 6th edition paper. Formatting of the paper has major flaws. The paper does not conform to APA 6th edition requirements whatsoever. 5 points out of 10: Appearance of final paper demonstrates the student’s limited ability to format the paper. There are significant errors in formatting and/or the total omission of major components of an APA 6th edition paper. They can include the omission of the cover page, abstract, and page numbers. Additionally the page has major formatting issues with spacing or paragraph formation. Font size might not conform to size requirements. The student also significantly writes too large or too short of and paper 7 points out of 10: Research paper presents an above-average use of formatting skills. The paper has slight errors within the paper. This can include small errors or omissions with the cover page, abstract, page number, and headers. There could be also slight formatting issues with the document spacing or the font Additionally the paper might slightly exceed or undershoot the specific number of required written pages for the assignment. 10 points: Student provides a high-caliber, formatted paper. This includes an APA 6th edition cover page, abstract, page number, headers and is double spaced in 12’ Times Roman Font. Additionally, the paper conforms to the specific number of required written pages and neither goes over or under the specified length of the paper.
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