Marshall Court Rulings
The Marshall Decisions
1. Marbury v. Madison (1803)
This historic court case established the concept of Judicial Review or the ability of the Judiciary Branch to declare a law unconstitutional. This case brought the Judicial Branch of the government on a more even power basis with the Legislative and Executive Branches. The Founding Fathers expected the branches of government to act as checks and balances on each other. The historic court case Marbury v. Madison accomplished this end thereby setting the precedent for numerous historic decisions in the future. 2. Fletcher v. Peck (1810)
In that trial, the Supreme Court ruled a state law unconstitutional and expanded the powers of the United States Supreme Court. It was the first case in which the Supreme Court ruled a state law unconstitutional, the decision also helped create a growing precedent for the sanctity of legal contracts, and hinted that Native Americans did not hold title to their own lands. 3. Martin v. Hunter’s Lessee (1816)
This case established that the Supreme Court has supremacy over state courts, and that state courts must hold decisions made by the Supreme Court. After many appeals between courts, the Supreme Court claimed they held power over state courts through the Constitution, and the Judiciary Art of 1789. The case ended with Martin gaining his land, and the Supreme Court establishing supremacy over high state courts. 4. Dartmouth College v. Woodard (1819)
The decision increased the power of the federal government over the states. It reaffirmed that the U.S. Supreme Court could invalidate state laws when it found those laws unconstitutional. Further, the case reinforced the practice of imposing restrictions upon state legislatures with regard to the regulation of corporations. 5. McCulloch v. Maryland (1819)
The ruling marked the first time that a state law had been overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court. The case was also the first...