Interstate Relations: The Neglected Dimension of Federalism

By Joseph F. Zimmerman | Go to book overview

2
Referee Role of the Supreme Court

A distinguishing feature of federalism in the United States is a dual judicial system-national courts and state courts. Numerous types of cases can be brought in either the United States courts or in state courts, and the Congress has enacted a statute allowing these types of cases to be removed from national courts to state courts or vice versa. 1 A second congressional statute assigns exclusive jurisdiction to the U.S. District Court over suits brought by a citizen of one state against a citizen of another state (diversity of citizenship) if the amount in controversy is $50,000 or more. 2

As noted in Chapter 1, the framers of the U.S. Constitution were convinced by experience under the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union of the need for a national supreme court which, among other duties, would hear suits by one or more states against one or more states. Section 2 of Article III of the constitution recognizes states as semisovereign units and grants the Supreme Court nonexclusive original (trial) jurisdiction over interstate disputes. Although this jurisdiction cannot be increased, the Congress in 1789 made this jurisdiction exclusive. 3 The court under Section 2 of Article III also has original but not exclusive jurisdiction over other cases in which a state is a party.

The framers recognized that suits between citizens of different states might result in state courts favoring their own citizens, and a neutral appellate tibunal should be available to review such decisions. Furthermore, it was apparent that state legislatures might enact laws discriminating against other states that violate provisions of the U.S. Constitution, and it would be essential to have a supreme national tribunal with authority to adjudicate such cases.


DISCRETIONARY ORIGINAL JURISDICTION

In contrast to congressional establishment of a procedure for implementing the Constitutional Interstate Rendition clause (see Ch. 6), Congress has not enacted a statute governing the invocation of the Supreme Court's original jurisdiction or its procedures.

-17-

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Interstate Relations: The Neglected Dimension of Federalism
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface vii
  • 1 - Relations between States 1
  • Notes 13
  • 2 - Referee Role of the Supreme Court 17
  • Notes 29
  • 3 - Interstate Compacts and Agreements 33
  • Notes 55
  • 4 - Full Faith and Credit 59
  • Notes 81
  • 5 - Privileges and Immunities 87
  • Notes 99
  • 6 - Refidition of Fugitives from Justice 103
  • Notes 114
  • 7 - Interstate Economic Protectionism 117
  • Notes 136
  • 8 - Interstate Competition for Tourists, Sports Franchises, and Business Firms 141
  • Notes 158
  • 9 - Interstate Tax Revenue Competition 161
  • Notes 180
  • 10 - Formal and Informal Interstate Cooperation 185
  • Notes 207
  • 11 - Model for Improved Interstate Relations 213
  • Notes 233
  • Bibliography 237
  • Index 259
  • About the Author *
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