The Supreme Court is considering two cases this month involving racal bias in the courtroom. In Buck v. Davis, the Court will decide whether a death sentence can be appealed because an expert for the defense testified that the defendant posed a greater risk of future criminal acts because he is African American. And today the Court will hear arguments in Peña-Rodriguez v. Colorado, which involves the question of whether a jury verdict can be overturned because of allegations of racial bias during jury deliberations.
Read more about Buck v. Davis.
Read more about Peña-Rodriguez v. Colorado.
And see Christina Swarns, who argued Buck v. Davis before the Supreme Court last week, in our film Jury Selection: Edmonson v. Leesville.
The Supreme Court is back in session today following summer recess. Click here for information about how the Court schedule works. And for more information on the cases before the Court this session, click here.
261 years ago today, the fourth Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court, John Marshall, was born. Marshall presided over some of the most influential early cases before the Court, including Marbury v. Madison, which established the principle of judicial review.
Also on this day in 1789, President George Washington signed the Judiciary Act of 1789, which established the Federal Court system.
To learn more about John Marshall and the history of the Federal Court system, check out our film An Independent Judiciary.
Happy Constitution Day! Commemorate the signing of the Constitution 229 years ago and check out the Annenberg Classroom website for a list of educational resources (including the Constitution Project films!) all about our founding document.
Check out the latest film in the Constitution Project Series, Freedom of the Press: New York Times v. United States. Freedom of the Press has been guaranteed by the Constitution for over 200 years. It’s right there in the First Amendment to the Bill of Rights. But almost as soon as the ink was dry on the First Amendment, people in power started to challenge its protections — and they haven’t stopped throughout its 200 year history.