Article III

ADJUDICATION OF RIGHTS 

 

Section 1. The judicial power of the United States, shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The judges, both of the supreme and inferior courts, shall hold their offices during good behaviour, and shall, at stated times, receive for their services, a compensation, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office.

Section 2. The judicial power shall extend to all cases, in law and equity, arising under this Constitution, the laws of the United States, and treaties made, or which shall be made, under their authority;--to all cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls;--to all cases of admiralty and maritime jurisdiction;--to controversies to which the United States shall be a party;--

The very foundation of the power of the federal courts to declare Acts of Congress unconstitutional lies in the power and duty of those courts to decide cases and controversies properly before them United States v. Raines, 362 U.S. 17, 20  (1960).

 

The jurisdiction of federal courts is defined and limited by Article III of the Constitution. ….the judicial power of federal courts is constitutionally restricted to "cases" and "controversies." Flast v. Cohen 392 U.S. 83, 94 (1968) >  Aetna Life Ins. Co. v. Haworth,  >300 U.S. 227 , 239, 240(1937); 2 Dall. 419, 431, 432;  >Muskrat v. United States, 219 U.S. 346, 356 , 357 (1911) 

 

[The] case and controversy limitation, …[is an ]…American institution of judicial review……for the preservation of individual rightsRescue Army v. Municipal Court 331 U.S. 549 , 572 (1947).  ''The province of the court is, solely, to decide on the rights of individuals, …...'' Marbury v. Madison, 5 U.S. 137, 170 (1803).

 

Upon the state courts, equally with the courts of the Union, rests the obligation to guard, enforce, and protect every right granted or secured by the Constitution of the United States, whenever those rights are involved in any suit or proceeding before them, for the judges of the state courts are required to take an oath to support that Constitution. They are bound by it, … as the supreme law of the land. Mr. Justice Harlan in Robb v. Connolly 111 U.S. 624, 637(1884);

 

[S]tate courts also have the solemn responsibility " to guard, enforce, and protect every right granted or secured by the Constitution of the United States . . .," . "We yet like to believe that wherever the Federal courts sit, human rights under the Federal Constitution are always a proper subject for adjudication, and that we have not the right to decline the exercise of that jurisdiction ….." Zwickler v. Koota,  389 U.S. 241, 248   (1967).

 

''It is only where rights, ….are being, or about to be, affected prejudicially by the application or enforcement of a statute that its validity may be called in question by a suitor and determined by an exertion of the judicial power. State of Texas v. Interstate Commerce Commission, 258 U.S. 158 162 1922)

 

The Art. III judicial power exists only to redress or otherwise to protect against injury to the complaining party, even though the court's judgment may benefit others collaterally. Warth v. Seldin, 422 U.S. 490, 499  (1975)  

 

We have no power per se to review and annul acts of Congress on the ground that they are unconstitutional. That question may be considered only when the justification for some direct injury suffered or threatened, presenting a justiciable issue, is made to rest upon such an act.  Commonwealth of Massachusetts v. Mellon 262 U.S. 447, 488, (1923)

 

Art. III standing

 

In Griswold the appellants were found guilty against the claim that the accessory statute as so applied violated the Fourteenth Amendment. Here those doubts about standing  are removed by reason of a criminal conviction. Certainly the accessory should have standing to assert that the offense which he is charged with assisting is not, or cannot constitutionally be, a crime. Griswold v. Connecticut 381 U.S. 479, 481(1965),     

 

The physician appellants, therefore, assert a sufficiently direct threat of personal detriment. They should not be required to await and undergo a criminal prosecution as the sole means of seeking relief. Planned Parenthood of Central Missouri v. Danforth, 428 U.S. 52, 62  (1976) > Doe v. Bolton, 410 U.S. 179, 188 1973

 

[T]he irreducible constitutional minimum of standing contains three elements. Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife 504 U.S. 555, 560   (1992)

 

First, the plaintiff must have suffered an "injury in fact" - an invasion of a legally-protected interest which is (a) concrete and particularized, and (b) "actual or imminent, not `conjectural' or `hypothetical,'"

Second, there must be a causal connection between the injury and the conduct complained of - the injury has to be "fairly . . . trace[able] to the challenged action of the defendant, ..." > [426 U.S. 26, 41,42];

Third, it must be "likely," as opposed to merely "speculative," that the injury will be "redressed by a favorable decision." > [426 U.S. 26, 38,43]

Simon v. Eastern Kentucky Welf. Rights. Org. 426 U.S. 26 (1976)

The common thread underlying both requirements is that a person cannot challenge the constitutionality of a statute unless he shows that he himself is injured by its operation ''an invasion of a legally-protected interest,'' Barrows v. Jackson 346 U.S. 249,255-56 (1953)

The party who invokes the power must be able to show, not only that the statute is invalid, but that he has sustained or is immediately in danger of sustaining some direct injury as the result of its enforcement, and not merely that he suffers in some indefinite way in common with people generally. Commonwealth of Massachusetts v. Mellon, 262 U.S. 447,488 (1923)

 

His "interest must be of a personal and not of an official nature." ………..The interest must not be wholly negligible, as that of a taxpayer of the Federal Government is considered to be, ……. A litigant must show more than that "he suffers in some indefinite way in common with people generally." Anti -Fascist Committee v. McGrath 341 U.S. 123, 151 (1951).   

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