Help Wanted

Supreme Court

Justice Needed

Congress has just decided to add two more justices to the Supreme Court. The President is searching for people to fill the vacancies.

Requirements

There are no requirements specified by the Constitution. You can be born in any country, and of any age. However, you will be more likely be chosen if you:



  • Have been a lawyer and a judge
  • Are older
  • Are in the same political party as the president
  • It also helps to have the same ideas as the president

What is it?

The Supreme Court is the highest level of court in the United States Judicial Branch. The Judicial Branch is the branch that interprets the laws that are written by the Legislative Branch.

Who is in it?

The Supreme Court currently consists of nine members. There is one chief and eight associate justices. They are:


  • John G. Roberts, Jr., Chief Justice of the United States
  • Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice
  • Anthony M. Kennedy, Associate Justice
  • Clarence Thomas, Associate Justice
  • Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice
  • Stephen G. Breyer, Associate Justice
  • Samuel Anthony Alito, Jr., Associate Justice
  • Sonia Sotomayor, Associate Justice
  • Elena Kagan, Associate Justice

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How are the judges selected?

The president chooses who fills the vacancies in the Supreme Court. He or she gets to pick whoever they feel would suit the position. This choice must be confirmed by the Senate through a majority vote. The Senate cannot deny a candidate based on political party, or things such as religion or race. If the Senate gives you a majority vote, you are in! If not, the president just picks another candidate.

What does the Supreme Court do?

The Supreme Court only handles cases that either are between states, or ones that regard issues with the Constitution. There are two types of cases that reach the Supreme Court - original and appellate.


Original - These are cases that were originally to be discussed by the Supreme Court. These are cases that involve issues between states, or issues between states and countries. An example of this would be if two states had a dispute over the trading routes of a river.


Appellate - These are cases that were originally at a lower level, but were appealed to the Supreme Court. For these cases, a person would get a ruling and would not like that ruling. If they felt that the ruling was unconstitutional, they could appeal to the next court. If they continued to do this, it would reach the Supreme Court. However, only a fraction of the appealed cases get to have a trial in the Supreme Court, because they are very busy, and do not have enough time. An example would be if someone was convicted of murder and was given the death penalty. If they thought this was unconstitutional, they could appeal this to the Supreme Court.