US POLITICS - Comparison between US and UK Supreme Courts


Comparative Politics - The UK and US Supreme Court 

  • In the UK, policy matters such as abortion rights, the death penalty and gun control are decided by parliament.
  • In the USA, they are settled largely by the Supreme Court
  • In 1935, the U.S Supreme Court moved into its own purpose built building in Capitol Hill, however, the UK supreme court was only formally established on the 1st of October 2009 due to the dissolving of the role Lord Chancellor
  • In the UK, of the 20 judges who have served on the court, there has only been one woman - Lady Hale, appointed in June 2013 and none from ethnic minorities 
  • In the US, 1/3 are women and 14% are ethnic minorities 
  • In the USA, judcial activism centres on the Supreme Court's tendancy to declare acts of Congress unconsitutional 
  • In the UK, it centres on the court's tendency to declare the actions of ministers ultra vires (acting beyond one's legal powers"
  • In the UK, judicial independence is protected as judges have immunity from prosecution for any


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