15 Key Supreme Court Cases

Below are the 15 key Supreme Court cases you need to know and understand:

  1. Marbury v. Madison (1803)- Established doctrine of Judicial Review
  2. McCulloch v. Maryland (1819)- Established Federalism (national over state)
  3. Schenck v. U.S. (1919)- Restriction of freedom of speech
  4. Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka (1954)- Overturned Plessy v. Ferguson and integrated school systems
  5. Baker v. Carr (1961)- Federal courts can intervene in Congressional redistricting
  6. Engel v. Vitale (1962)- Unconstitutional to force school prayer
  7. Gideon v. Wainwright (1963)- Indigent defendants must be provided counsel (lawyer)
  8. Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District (1969)- Students have 1st Amendment rights in a school setting (wearing armbands)
  9. New York Times v. U.S. (1971)- “Pentagon Papers trial”; U.S. violated 1st Amendment rights of freedom of the press to NYT
  10. Wisconsin v. Yoder (1972)-Children cannot be placed under compulsory education after the 8th grade
  11. Roe v. Wade (1973)- Legalized abortion
  12. Shaw v. Reno (1993)- Prohibited discriminatory Congressional redistricting
  13. U.S. v. Lopez (1995)- Reduced the Congressional scope of the Commerce Clause
  14. McDonald v. Chicago (2010)-Affirmed the 2nd Amendment right to bear arms to the states
  15. Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission (2010)-Confirmed 1st Amendment freedom of speech rights to corporations, unions and nonprofits- no limits on contributions