Morgan v. Illinois, 504 U.S. 719, 8 (1992)

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Opinion of the Court

scheme," Spaziano v. Florida, 468 U. S. 447, 464 (1984) (citations omitted), and that no State is constitutionally required by the Sixth Amendment or otherwise to provide for jury determination of whether the death penalty shall be imposed on a capital defendant, ibid. Illinois has chosen, however, to delegate to the jury this task in the penalty phase of capital trials in addition to its duty to determine guilt or innocence of the underlying crime. The issue, therefore, is whether petitioner is entitled to relief under the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. We conclude that he is, and in the course of doing so we deal with four issues: whether a jury provided to a capital defendant at the sentencing phase must be impartial; whether such defendant is entitled to challenge for cause and have removed on the ground of bias a prospective juror who will automatically vote for the death penalty irrespective of the facts or the trial court's instructions of law; whether on voir dire the court must, on defendant's request, inquire into the prospective jurors' views on capital punishment; and whether the voir dire in this case was constitutionally sufficient.


Duncan v. Louisiana, 391 U. S. 145 (1968), held that the Fourteenth Amendment guaranteed a right of jury trial in all state criminal cases which, were they tried in a federal court, would come within the Sixth Amendment's guarantee of trial by jury. Prior to this decision applying the Sixth Amendment's jury trial provision to the States, we recognized in Irvin v. Dowd, 366 U. S. 717 (1961), and in Turner v. Louisiana, 379 U. S. 466 (1965), that the Fourteenth Amendment's Due Process Clause itself independently required the impartiality of any jury empaneled to try a cause:

"Although this Court has said that the Fourteenth Amendment does not demand the use of jury trials in a State's criminal procedure, Fay v. New York, 332 U. S. 261 [(1947)]; Palko v. Connecticut, 302 U. S. 319 [(1937)],

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