“The judicial Power of the United States shall be vested in one supreme Court, and in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. “- Article III, Section I
When upholding The United States Constitution, “We the People” as a “Nation”, rely on the nine Justices of The Supreme Court to rule on cases the way that are deemed fit under The Constitution. Without any political biases, but as “interpreters” of The Constitution, the Supreme Court conducts itself as an “outside third party” for Societal issues that come in front of the Court. While media outlets are usually the first to report to the masses as to what our Judicial System has ruled on, an individual, or typical layman, has not much knowledge on where to gain such reliable information. One who wants to learn the in-depth details, can come to The Supreme Court Yearbook as a reliable source containing full opinions of Judicial rulings. The Supreme Court Yearbook is such resource one may use, to analyze each case since 1989. To read a case without any political leanings, or twists of words to fit an agenda, The Supreme Court Yearbook is strictly a publication of writings, verbatim, straight from the intelligent minds that were chosen to defend our Constitution.
The Supreme Court Yearbook is current as of the 2015 Term, and the Judicial Analysis of how each Justice rules, is updated as of the 2010 Term. This makes for a reliable resource that is not necessarily outdated, but otherwise current, for topical information being sought. This resource breaks down the ruling of the case by each Justice, and even analyzes how each Justice has ruled while on the Bench. The purpose of this information is for public knowledge of all case law that has come from the Supreme Court. If an Attorney finds their case being accepted by The Supreme Court, this would be a great tool on being able to get into the minds of each Justice, and strategize oral arguments accordingly. This resource is also useful as a law student, when it comes to researching various cases within a certain topic. If you find a specific case law in Westlaw, or Lexis Nexis, you can switch to The Supreme Court Yearbook, or vice versa, to breakdown rulings of each Justice by concurrence, or dissent. For law students who are interested in Constitutional law, or one with aspirations of becoming a sitting Judge, this is a great tool to see how each Justice articulates their thoughts through words, and how every Justice has their own style of interpretation under The Constitution. A typical layman with a thirst for accurate, and reliable knowledge, will also deem this resource as fitting for their specific needs.
The Supreme Court Yearbook is a SAGE/CQ Publication, and is free for all Charleston School of Law Students. This database can be found at the following link on the Charleston School of Law Sol Blott Jr. Law Library Database Page: http://charlestonlaw.edu/sol-blatt-jr-law-library/databases-and-catalog/on-campus/. The Author of this resource is Kenneth Jost, who has been writing for the Supreme Court Yearbook since 1992. Jost graduated from Georgetown University Law, where he currently teaches Media Law as an adjunct Professor. Before joining The Supreme Court Yearbook, Jost was a Supreme Court Commentator seen, and heard on various media outlets within the 70’s, on programs such as CBS radio, CNN, C-Span, Fox, MSNBC, NPR, among others. From 1977-1980, Jost served as chief legislative assistant to then-Rep. Al Gore.
By Leah Masterson, class of 2020