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The New Stern & Gressman:

Tony Mauro (law.com) reports:

The latest edition of the unquestioned bible for Supreme Court practitioners has arrived — all 1,427 pages of it. [Roy Englert Jr. of Robbins, Russell, Englert, Orseck, Untereiner & Sauber adds, "Considering how universally it's accepted, it's more like the Bible, the Quran, the Bhagavad Gita, and the Talmud all rolled into one."]

The ninth edition of Supreme Court Practice has just been published by BNA Books, and its girth is a testament to the increased complexity of Supreme Court advocacy, even — or especially — as its docket declines. In 1986, when the Court was deciding twice as many cases as it is now, the sixth edition of the book ran a mere 1,030 pages. The first edition in 1950 was 553 pages long and cost $7.50. The latest edition goes for $455.

It is a soup-to-nuts guidebook to everything lawyers need to know about petitioning, briefing, and arguing before the Supreme Court, with insights into the best ways of getting favorable attention from the Court at every stage.

One unnerving footnote reports that lawyers have fainted during oral argument on at least three occasions through history and advises, "Preparation, food, and sleep should stave off similar embarrassments." ...

Of course, that's just the funny bit; the rest of the book is a detailed and technical discussion of everything you need to know about Supreme Court practice, whether about cert petitions, merits briefing, stay applications, or whatever else.

Note that my Mayer Brown colleagues Stephen Shapiro, Kenneth Geller, and Timothy Bishop are coauthors of the book, though they did not ask me to mention it.

Cornellian (mail):
One unnerving footnote reports that lawyers have fainted during oral argument on at least three occasions through history

Big deal. Overweight, out of shape, stressed out lawyers are dropping like flies all the time.

Now if a lawyer drops dead during oral argument at the Supreme Court, then I will be impressed.
2.12.2008 8:41pm
Waldensian (mail):

"Considering how universally it's accepted, it's more like the Bible, the Quran, the Bhagavad Gita, and the Talmud all rolled into one."

Well, except for the fact that it isn't total and complete malarkey.
2.12.2008 8:53pm
Eric Muller (www):
I spent the afternoon with Gene Gressman today; he told me that he'd heard this Legal Times piece was forthcoming but I hadn't yet seen it.

Gene is plugging right along at almost 91 years old. I should only be doing as well at 71 as he is at 91!

Gene was also pleased to show me lovely thank-you notes he'd received from several of the Justices for their copies of the new edition.
2.12.2008 9:09pm
James Fulford (mail):
Does it say who it was that fainted? One of them was Solicitor-General Stanley Reed, who fainted in 1935 during intense questioning over the New Deal, which he was in unfortunate position of trying to defend, but who else?
2.12.2008 9:20pm