A lively and fascinating introduction to America's legal system
The best way to understand how the law works is to see it in action. The Steps to the Supreme Court follows two real cases--one civil, one criminal--as they work their way through the system from initial charges and complaints all the way up to the Supreme Court.
Step by step, you'll track the criminal case involving the murder trial of Paul House, following the defendant from the night of the murder through his conviction, death sentence, appeals, and final chance for exoneration. The controversial civil case concerns the Ten Commandments being displayed on public property. You'll follow the parties from the plaintiffs' first filing of their suits through the Supreme Court decisions and back to their aftermath in the lower courts, where judges struggle to make practical law from a complex and divided ruling. Along the way, you'll witness:
Trials and appeals in both state and federal courts
Arguments from more than 30 attorneys on both sides of each case
Decisions and dissents from more than 100 judges
Dramatic turning points in the progress of each case
Key differences in the handling of civil and criminal cases
How the Supreme Court decides which cases to hear
Written by a member of the Supreme Court bar, The Steps to the Supreme Court brings the strengths and weaknesses of the United States legal system to vibrant, accessible, and compelling life.