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275. But the separation of the Judicial from the Legislative Power, was designed not only to create a distinct and independent body to expound and execute the Law; but to create a bulwark to protect a Constitution conferring limited powers, from Legislative encroachments and Executive usurpation; whilst this restraining power was itself confined within its proper limits, by corresponding checks, in the hands of the other departments, or arising from its own constitution.
276. A further object of the separation of the Judicial Power from the other departments in the Constitution of the United States, and of the precautions for maintaining its independence from their control, was to afford security to the General Government, in the exercise of its limited powers, against the inroads and influence of the several States.
277. All the reasons that support the right and duty of the Courts, in the ordinary exercise of their power, to declare void those Acts of Congess which in their judgment, are repugnant to the Constitution, apply with equal force to establish a similar control and authority in the Judiciary of the Union, over the acts and proceedings of the State Governments.
278. The People of the several States, by their adoption of the Constitution of the United States, in many instances superseded and modified in effect their State Constitutions, which the People of each State respectively alone could alter; and in those instances they were competent to do so, and to acknowledge and declare, not only the Federal Constitution itself, but the Laws and Treaties made in pur. suance of its authority, to be the Supreme Law of the land, and of paramount obligation to either the Constitution or the Laws of any of the States.
279. By declaring that the Judicial Power of the United States should extend to all cases arising under the Constitution, the People vested in that department of the Government authority to determine the construction of that instrument, in every case in which such a question should arise judicially, whether directly between the parties to the suit; - or collaterally be. tween the parties to the national compact.
280. This authority of the Judiciary of the Union, necessarily results from the operation of the Laws of the United States upon the individual citizens of the several States ; and if this distinct, independent, and appropriate department, were not expressly created as an intermediate body between the National and State Governments, it is, at all events, that in which, from its nature and constitution, this high and indispensable power necessarily resides, and could be most safely deposited."
281. But the Judiciary of the United States has no authority to declare void acts of a State Legislature, on the ground of their repugnancy to the State Constitution, unless in administering the local law of the State ; in which case the Courts of the United States act exactly as the State tribunals are bound to act...
282. The propriety of extending the Judicial Power of the Union " to all cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers, and Consuls,” will appear from the consideration, that all diplomatic officers, like the two former descriptions of these public agents, are the immediate representatives of their sovereigns, and, as such, owe no subjection to any Laws but those of their own country and the Law of Nations; and that the acts of the latter description of officers are not in all cases subject to the private law of the country in which they are appointed to reside ; and where they
are liable to its jurisdiction, the reasons applicable to all foreigners render it proper that they should be ame, nable only to the National tribunals.
· 283. Public ministers, in order to perform their duty to their own sovereign, should be independent of any other authority; their powers, duties, and privileges, are therefore determined, not by any municipal regu. lations or enactments, but by the Law of Nations, which is equally obligatory upon all sovereigns; and every question in which their rights or the rights of Consuls are involved, is so intimately connected with the peace of the nation, that it would be unsafe to submit them to any other than the national judica
284. The clause extending the Judicial Power "to all cases of Admiralty and Maritime Jurisdiction," is supported by the same considerations relative to the public peace, as respect public Ministers and Consuls; as Maritime causes generally depend on the Law of Nations, and commonly affect the rights of aliens.
285. Unless jurisdiction had been given to the na, tional Courts of “cases to which the United States are a party,” all the rights, powers, contracts, and privileges, which they possess in their sovereign ca; pacity, would be at the mercy and control of the several States ; and it would, besides, be a novelty in jur. risprudence to prevent a sovereign power from suing in its own Courts, e n * 286. But the terms in which this jurisdiction is conferred, does not vest in the Federal Courts juris: diction in all controversies to which the United States shall be a party-so as to justify a suit to be brought against the United States without the consent of Con; gress ; and according to an established maxim of public Law, it is inherent in the nature of sovereignty not to be amenable to the suit of a private person without its own consent.
287. The extension of the Judicial Power of the United States “to controversies between two or more States," is essential to the peace and stability of the Union ;which, before the adoption of the Constitution, had been frequently endangered, and sometimes interrupted by territorial disputes, and interfering claims of boundary between the States : and it may justly be presumed, that under the National Government, the decision of all such controversies will be impartial
288. As" controversies between a State and the citizens of another State," might excite animosities amongst the members of the Union, the Federal Courts are properly designated as the tribunals to decide them; and by the first Judiciary act, Congress conferred jurisdiction on the Courts of the United States, in suits prosecuted by a citizen of another State of the Union, or by citizens or subjects of foreign States.
- 289. The individual Státes, however, were not willing to submit to be arraigned as dependants, before the Federal Courts, at the instance of private persons; and it was subsequently declared by an amendment of the Constitution, that "the Judicial Power should not be construed to extend to any suit of Law or Equity commenced or prosecuted against any one of the United States, by, citizens of another State, or foreign citizens or subjects.”
290. Although the necessity of vesting jurisdiction in the Federal Courts in “ controversies between citizens of different States," may not stand upon ground equally as strong as some of the preceding instances; it may, nevertheless, be vindicated by high motives: of public justice and policy; and there are many cases in which such a power may be highly expedient, if not indispensable, to carry into effect some of the privileges and iminunities conferred by the Union ; and some of the prohibitions upon the States. .
291. The clause relative to “controversies between citizens of the same State claiming lands under grants of different States," is the only instance in which the Constitution directly provides for the cognizance of disputes between citizens of the same State in the Federal Courts; but it is not the only one in which it contemplates their being incidentally and ultimately subject to the national jurisdiction; as all the citizens of the United States are equally entitled to the benefit of that jurisdiction, in all cases arising under the Constitution, Laws, and Treaties of the Union. .
292. The direct jurisdiction, in this particular instance, is founded on the reasonableness and propriety of giving the National Courts cognizance of all cases in which the State tribunals cannot be supposed to be impartial; and it attaches, not only to grants made by different States which were never united, but also to grants made by different States which were ori. ginally comprehended within the same jurisdiction and government, if made after the separation, even though the origin of the title may be traced back to an antecedent period. . . . .
293. The jurisdiction of " controversies between a State, or the citizens thereof, and foreign States, citizens, or subjects," is founded on the responsibility of the Union for the conduct of its members; and on the necessity that this national responsibility for injury, should be accompanied by the faculty of preventing it.