GOVERNMENT POWER AND ACCOUNTABILITY
When the United States Constitution was written over two hundred years ago, its founders recognized the importance of the separation of powers among the various branches and levels of government. The lines of separation, however, are not always clearly defined by the Constitution, and conflicts arise over the proper allocation of power. Part III examines the various conflicts that arise in the division of power in governmental structures of the United States and in the former U.S.S.R. The analysis in Part III also relates to any future economic or political integration of North America begun under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) or the former U.S.S.R. states as attempted through the CIS.
The paper by Senior Judge Hans A. Linde discusses the development of the federal and state court systems in the United States. It first identifies three characteristics of the American judicial system that are more important than any others: the nature of litigation, differences in state and federal jurisdiction, and the selection and tenure of judges. The paper explains the primary role that the judiciary plays in the government and observes that, while judicial review of the constitutionality of laws is perhaps the most well-known feature of the judiciary, it is in actuality seldom used. Instead, most of the issues facing federal courts are constitutional questions that do not involve the judicial review of laws. Rather, courts spend the bulk of their time ensuring that constitutional procedures have been followed and that individual rights are safeguarded. The paper examines the historical and institutional foundations of judicial power and lists several factors that contribute both to the judicial heritage of the United States and to deference to a court's decision. The paper concludes by correctly asserting that the court is better suited to enforce the Constitution's negative guarantees against governmental abuse rather than to pursue affirmative social programs that might displace both the democratic decision-making process and the accountability of the legislature for budgeting public resources.
Martha A. Field's paper analyzes the role of the United States' dual-court system. It observes that the United States has a very-well-developed federal system that on the one hand provides an accessible forum for those issues that would best be heard in a federal court, but that often leads to jurisdictional