I was reading the court’s “Guide for Counsel in Cases to be Argued Before the Supreme Court of the United States” and I noticed a reference to a very recent case:

For an excellent example of a counsel who was intimately familiar with her client’s business, see the transcript of argument in United States v. Flores-Montano, 541 U. S. 149 (2004). The case dealt with the searching of vehicle gas tanks by customs agents at an international border. Government counsel had a total grasp of why and how the agents conducted the searches and provided convincing explanations to all questions posed by the Court.

The arguments of Lisa Blatt in US v. Flores-Montano can be found here. Arguments in that case were very technical and Ms. Blatt answered all of the questions with confidence. Ms. Blatt still works at the SG’s office and has argue two cases this term, most recently on March 31, 2009.

The Court also referenced another case in the same question but never cited the case. Does anyone know the name of the case?

Know your client’s business. One counsel representing a large beer brewing corporation was asked the following by a Justice during argument: “What is the difference between beer and ale?” The question had little to do with the issues, but the case involved the beer brewing business. Counsel gave a brief, simple, and clear answer that was understood by everyone in the Courtroom. He knew the business of his client, and it showed. The Justice who posed the question thanked counsel in a warm and gracious manner.

Any ideas?


1 Response to “An Example of Excellent Oral Advocacy”

  1. 1 Oral advocacy | Catalogix

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Categories

Random Posts

  • Advocate Watch: With the Term quickly approaching it's midway point, we can take a look at which advocates have made the biggest mark on the Term. Hearing L...
  • Early OT09 Stats: I've finally finished the first edition of my OT09 statistics. First, the links: Term Index and Term Opinion Breakdown. Honestly, the nam...
  • Updated Term Charts: Starting this week, I'll be posting my updated charts on SCOTUSblog. You can find the first SB version of my charts here. More spec...
  • Likelihood of a Petition Being Granted: There are a lot of numbers thrown out about the likelihood of a cert. petition being granted. The number I've always heard is 1%, but I some...
  • More Sophisticated Reconferencing Statistics: A commentator on my last conferencing post picked up on an important part of the distribution question that I had intentionally omitted....