Constitution Daily

Smart conversation from the National Constitution Center

Sixth Amendment

On This Day:  You have a right to an attorney

March 18, 2019 By NCC Staff

It was on this day in 1963 that the Supreme Court handed down the Gideon decision, which guaranteed the rights of the accused to have a public defender in court.

Supreme Court rules for defendant in capital murder plea case

May 14, 2018 By Scott Bomboy

On Monday, a divided Supreme Court said a court in a Louisiana murder case couldn’t accept a lawyer’s admission of his own client’s guilt over his client’s objections.

Can a lawyer admit guilt in a murder case over a client’s objections?

January 16, 2018 By Scott Bomboy

In Supreme Court arguments on Wednesday, the nine Justices will tackle a Sixth Amendment question about the proper role of attorneys in capital murder cases when a lawyer admits guilt over his client’s objections.

Race bias in the jury room: what’s the solution?

October 14, 2016 By Lyle Denniston

Lyle Denniston, Constitution Daily's Supreme Court correspondent, looks at a Supreme Court case about racial bias expressed within the secret confines of a jury deliberation.

The Supreme Court sends mixed signal on Hurst ruling’s meaning

August 10, 2016 By Lyle Denniston

On Monday, the Supreme Court turned aside a plea to require jurors to satisfy the toughest legal test before they may vote to impose the death penalty, rejecting a new attempt by lawyers to further define an important Sixth Amendment ruling.

Constitution Check: Will the right of the poor to a defense lawyer be expanded?

May 26, 2016 By Lyle Denniston

Lyle Denniston, the National Constitution Center’s constitutional literacy adviser, looks at the Sixth Amendment issue of a right to counsel and the ability of public defenders to mount effective cases.

Supreme Court overrules Florida death penalty sentencing scheme

January 12, 2016 By NCC Staff

In an 8-1 decision, the United States Supreme Court has ruled against Florida’s capital punishment scheme, which says that judges have the power to determine facts in death penalty cases.

Ernesto Miranda’s role in constitutional history

December 14, 2015 By Scott Bomboy

Note: Landmark Cases, C-SPAN’s series on historic Supreme Court decisions—produced in cooperation with the National Constitution Center—continues on Monday, December 14 at 9 p.m. ET with the story of Miranda v. Arizona.

The Supreme Court takes on assets needed for a criminal defense

November 10, 2015 By Jonathan Stahl

Today, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the case of Luis v. United States. While case does not directly challenge the constitutionality of asset forfeiture as a practice, it highlights how the restraint of personal assets of a criminal defendant could raise due process concerns.

Why Chief Justice John Roberts was eligible for jury consideration

April 17, 2015 By NCC Staff

The Supreme Court justices have had some downtime recently, and the most-prominent jurist in the land had an interesting day on Wednesday in court as a prospective Maryland juror.

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