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Medellín v. Texas, Supreme Court Decision

Published March 25, 2008

In this case the Supreme Court decided that international treaties are commitments, not binding domestic law. Congress has the power to implement such treaties by enacting statutes to implement them if the treaties are not "self-executing". It also decided that decisions made in international tribunals and the International Court of Justice are also not binding domestic law; specifically, the U.N. Charter, ICJ Statute, and the Optional Protocol were neither self-executing nor had they been implemented by Congress. Finally, the Court decided that without Constitutional authority or Congress' approval the President does not have the power to settle international disputes by means of enforcing international treaties.

The Court argued the case on October 10, 2007; it was decided on March 25, 2008.

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