The Pennsylvania Supreme Court
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has extraordinary importance in our Commonwealth's governance. It has the final say in interpreting the meaning of Pennsylvania's laws; it reviews all death penalty appeals; and it has the power to allow appeal of cases of far-reaching impact heard by lower courts. As the Supreme Court's own webpage explains,
Both judicially and administratively, the Supreme Court is, by constitutional definition, Pennsylvania's highest court. In matters of law, it is the Commonwealth's court of last resort. In matters of administration, the Supreme Court is responsible for maintaining a single, integrated judicial system and thus has supervisory authority over all other state courts.
Committees of the Supreme Court address issues of concern to the conduct of trials and the resolution of disputes in Pennsylvania - evidence; civil and criminal procedure; the handling of appeals; attorney discipline; and the requirements of continuing legal education. The Court has also undertaken studies of the Justice system and developed and encouraged programs in judicial education.
Pennsylvania's Supreme Court Justices are elected for an initial ten year term; thereafter, they may run for additional ten year terms on a "yes-no" vote, without any political party affiliation.