Like the other branches of the Government, they can all get lost when we think about how the country is being run and who is in charge of what. All the branches end up being referred to as one Government when they do not do all the same things. Each branch has its duties that keep the Government working and keep it all balanced. For example, the judicial branch has a critical role, and we need to know how and who is in charge within this branch.



The Judicial Branch is comprised of the Supreme Court and the Federal Judicial Center. The Supreme Court currently has one chief justice and eight associate justices. The Federal Judicial Center is a board with the Chief Justice, two circuit judges of the U.S. courts of appeals, three U.S. district courts, one bankruptcy judge, and one magistrate judge. That is a lot to keep straight. However, this branch has an important job to do and needs those educated in the laws to help accomplish it.


The Judicial Branch has three central powers. First, they can interpret the law. They can then determine the constitutionality of the law and apply it to individual cases. In basic language, they are going to decide what the laws created by other branches mean. And they will apply them to real-world cases and determine if any of them goes against the constitution. So those in this branch have a lot of weight on their shoulders.


Those that make up the Judicial Branch are not elected to their position. They are appointed by the President of the United States and then confirmed by the Senate. If we want a say, we need to make sure we make our vote count when electing the President and our Senate representatives from our state. Unlike other elected positions, there are more requirements for those appointed to the positions of the Judicial Branch. They must be trained in the law. It makes sense that they would only want to appoint people to such an important position. They need individuals who know the laws to decide the delicate matters they will be in charge of. Once appointed, they do not have a term. They can serve until they retire or are removed by the Senate.


The Supreme Court has its own building in Washington, DC. It is said they have such a grand building to show the importance it holds to the United States Government and our nation as a whole. Above the main entrance of this dignified building are the words “Equal Justice Under Law.” This simple statement shows the primary responsibility of the Supreme Court and the whole Judicial Branch. They are the upholders of the law, and where they do, it is a great remaindered of the effect it can have on the lives of us all.


The Judicial Branch is a vital piece of the Government as a whole that we need to understand.

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