Political Science | Judicial Politics
Y320 | 3560 | Hettinger

Federal and state courts in the United States play an important role our
political system and our legal system.  This course explores political
explanations of how the judicial system is structured and how it operates.
We will look at the structure of the American court system from the trial
level up through the appellate courts, with a special emphasis on the
Supreme Court.  We will examine the political aspects of selecting and
retaining judges and how those processes influence the judicial process.  We
will explore different theories of judicial decision-making and how well
they explain the outcomes of court decisions.  Finally, we will discuss the
impact of court activity on American society.