How To SCOTUS Gay Marriage Decision Explains The US Government Structure
The United States government has three branches. The executive branch includes the President and his staff. The legislative branch includes congress, and the judicial branch involves the court system. The very top of the judicial branch is the Supreme Court, and our digital has shortened the Supreme Court Of The United States to SCOTUS. The recent decision on gay marriage sheds some light on how laws are created across America.
States have the right to create laws to govern their populations, but each state is superseded by the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the laws of the land. A Supreme Court decision can overturn any law, and the decisions handed down by the Supreme Court will change the laws of this country instantly.
#1: The Gay Marriage Ruling
The gay marriage ruling in the Supreme Court involved the interpretation of the law as compared to the Constitution. The justices on the court decided that same-sex couples may be granted marriage licenses in all 50 states. The law of the land changed immediately, and every state must abide by the change in the law set down by the court.
#2: How Does The Court Decide?
The Supreme Court has nine justices who vote on each case they hear, and a 5-4 majority is needed to overturn a case. The court may see decisions that has any number of majorities, but each justice must join a side on the case. The justices produce opinions for each side in the case, and those opinions are published the moment the court reaches its ruling.
The members of the court hear arguments from both sides in a case, and the members of the court ask questions until they are satisfied they have all the information they need to come to a decision. Each case is decided by a vote held among the justices, and their opinions are provided to the press outside the court building by their interns.
#3: Can Cases Go Beyond The Supreme Court?
Cases cannot go beyond the Supreme Court once they have been decided, and the Supreme Court may choose to not hear certain cases. The court chose to hear the gay marriage case, and their decision has changed the law of the land. Any state that does not comply with the new law will be in violation of federal law, and stories will arise detailing disagreement with the law.
#4: What Can Change?
The federal government may pass new laws that contradict the old statutes, but a new case could be taken before the Supreme Court at any time. The court system works through many levels of courts from the appellate court and appeals court to federal circuit courts. The final step for any case is the Supreme Court, and the Supreme Court makes decisions based on it understanding of the Constitution.
#5: Why Is The Supreme Court Important?
The justices on the Supreme Court are appointed by Presidents, and each justice holds their post for life. The Supreme Court is tasked with interpreting what the Constitution means, and each justice must deliver the decision they believe is right.
Marriage certificates are being offered to same-sex couples today, and new stories will arise that detail the denial of certificates by certain court clerks. The Supreme Court has spoken, and the court has done its job. No one else can interpret the Constitution with the force of the Supreme Court, and the laws of the land cannot get in the way of a recent Supreme Court decision. You may or may not agree with the decision, but the court has done its duty.