Marbury v. Madison

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  • Thank you for electing me, Thomas Jefferson. I will do my best to serve this country.
  • I must make sure I have a strong Federal judicial branch before Jefferson takes office.
  • If Adams thinks we are sending commissions to his midnight judges then that outrageous Federalist is absolutely wrong!
  • Alright Mr. Jefferson I won't send them.
  • I, William Marbury am outraged that I didn't receive my commission to become an official judge. I must appeal to the Supreme Court. They will demand that Madison gives it to me.
  • As Chief Justice of the Supreme Court I need to fix this problem. Jefferson and Madison have acted illegally, but if I order them to give the commissions out they will ignore me. This would weaken the power the Supreme Court has and I can't allow that.
  • I can't order Madison and Jefferson to give the papers anyway because a section of the Judiciary Act of 1789 is unconstitutional. It gives the Supreme Court powers not mentioned in the Constitution.
  • (Present Day America) As the Supreme Court we can now declare laws unconstitutional and we can check the Constitutional validity of legislative acts. This is called Judicial Review.
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