More Legal Times

Judge Neil Gorsuch testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee during the second day of his confirmation hearing to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia at the U.S. Supreme Court. March 21, 2017.

Justice Gorsuch? Judge Awaits Vote as Democrats Strategize

By Marcia Coyle and Tony Mauro |

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch emerged unscathed from two very long days of questioning by the Senate Judiciary Committee but his biggest hurdle may be yet to come.

Donald Trump speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on February 10, 2011.

Fourth Circuit Expedites Travel Ban Case, Sets May 8 Hearing

By Cogan Schneier |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit agreed Thursday to expedite a challenge to President Donald Trump’s travel ban executive order, setting oral arguments in the case for May 8 at the court in Richmond.

Judge Neil Gorsuch testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee during the second day of his confirmation hearing to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia at the U.S. Supreme Court. March 21, 2017.

'Not My Finest Moment,' Gorsuch Says About Gitmo Letter

By Tony Mauro |

In a revealing moment of regret, U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch said Wednesday that a 2006 email he wrote calling negative attention to big law firm that were representing Guantanamo detainees was "not my finest moment."

Judge Neil Gorsuch testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee during the second day of his confirmation hearing to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia at the U.S. Supreme Court. March 21, 2017.

Gorsuch Says He's No Class Action Foe, And Other Highlights

By Marcia Coyle |

On the second day of his confirmation hearings, U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch insisted he wasn't biased against class actions, countered claims he usually ruled against the “little guy,” and declined to state his thoughts on abortion and torture.

Neal Katyal, of Hogan Lovells, during judge Neil Gorsuch’s confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia at the U.S. Supreme Court. March 20, 2017.

Why Did Neal Katyal Go an Extra Mile for Neil Gorsuch?

By Tony Mauro |

By tradition, U.S. Supreme Court nominees are introduced to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee for their confirmation hearings by the senators from their home state. Neil Gorsuch got a boost from Hogan Lovells partner Neal Katyal. "I introduced Judge Gorsuch because he is, in my judgment, an outstanding judge,” Katyal said Tuesday, explaining his decision. "Just plain merit."

Slideshow: Neil Gorsuch on Capitol Hill, for Round Two

By ALM staff |

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch was back on Capitol Hill on Tuesday for the second round of his confirmation hearing. Here's a snapshot of the Senate Judiciary action.

Judge Neil Gorsuch appears March 20 at his confirmation hearing.

'Judges Are Not Politicians in Robes,' Gorsuch Tells Senate

By Marcia Coyle |

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch emphasized in his opening statement Monday the independence and dedication to law of federal judges across the country. "Judges are not politicians in robes," Gorsuch, addressing the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, said Monday. "If I thought that I'd hang up my robe." Gorsuch didn't mention President Donald Trump, whose criticism of the judiciary drew rebuke from Republicans and Democrats alike. Democrats, leading up to the start of Monday's hearing, had questioned whether and how Gorsuch would express his independence.

U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C.

Gorsuch's Hearing Will Be Memorable. As So Many Others Were.

By Marcia Coyle and Tony Mauro |

What memories will Neil Gorsuch's confirmation hearing make? Time will tell. Here are highlights—and lowlights—from the 10 most recent Supreme Court confirmation hearings.

Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch meets with Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) at the Capitol on Tuesday, February 7, 2017.

Here's What to Expect at Gorsuch Confirmation Hearing

By Tony Mauro |

Apart from political fireworks, we predict long-winded statements from senators, careful answers to questions about hot-button issues, and plenty of tributes to the late Justice Antonin Scalia.

J. Michael Farren after his arrest in 2010.

Former White House Lawyer Disbarred in D.C.

By Zoe Tillman |

Former White House lawyer J. Michael Farren, who was found guilty last year of attempted murder for assaulting his former wife, has been disbarred in the District of Columbia.

Masterfile Corp. accuses a D.C. firm of using stock images—seen here, as depicted in the complaint—without permission.

Lawyer Accused of Stealing Stock Images to Pay $8,000

By Zoe Tillman |

Jerry Joseph, a patent attorney in Washington, will pay $8,000 to resolve claims that he used licensed stock images on his website without permission.

Intel Corp. headquarters in Santa Clara, CA.

Intel Gives Thumbs Up to Obama's Cybersecurity Framework

By Andrew Ramonas |

Intel Corp. put the voluntary cybersecurity framework President Barack Obama's administration released one year ago this month into action and has found it to be a useful tool, officials at the technology company said Tuesday.

Barack Obama.

No Patent Reform in Obama's SOTU, but There’s Still Hope

By Andrew Ramonas |

President Barack Obama in his State of the Union address on Tuesday night didn’t renew a call for patent litigation reform he made during the speech last year, dashing the hopes of some business groups and senior Republican lawmakers.

Jay Stephens.

Veteran DOJ Lawyer and Raytheon GC Jay Stephens Retiring

By Andrew Ramonas |

Jay Stephens is retiring as the general counsel of Raytheon Co., ending a decades-long legal career that brought him to some of the highest rungs of the U.S. Department of the Justice before he joined the defense contractor in 2002.

Ex-Commerce GC Kerry Takes Cybersecurity Role at Sidley

By Andrew Ramonas |

Cameron Kerry, who stepped down last year as the U.S. Department of Commerce's general counsel, has accepted a position at Sidley Austin advising chief legal officers and other corporate executives on privacy and cybersecurity issues.

Neil Gorsuch

In Dissent, Gorsuch Was Tough on Regulators and Skeptical of Legislative History

By Marcia Coyle |

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch on March 20 will head to the U.S. Senate for his confirmation hearing, where his record as a federal appeals judge—his majority rulings and his dissents—will come under new scrutiny. The late Justice William O. Douglas once said, "The right to dissent is the only thing that makes life tolerable for a judge on an appellate court." If that's true, Gorsuch, who sits on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, has found satisfaction and solace in his 35 dissents.

Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch meets with Senator Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) at the Hart Senate Office Building on Wednesday, February 8, 2017.

What Should the Senate #AskGorsuch?


We canvassed prominent lawyers for what questions they would like to see asked during Neil Gorsuch's confirmation hearing. Their responses touch on politics, precedent, same-sex marriage, ethics and the court’s shrinking caseload.

U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C.

Chamber Cheers and Advocates Fret as House Passes Sweeping Class Action Reform

By Amanda Bronstad |

Proponents of the measure bashed plaintiffs lawyers and said the bill would help stamp out frivolous suits. Opponents, calling the bill a "corporate handout," lament that it will hamper legitimate cases.

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch was recused in more than 1,000 cases, according to documents submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee in advance of his March 20 confirmation hearing.

Neil Gorsuch Recused in More Than 1,000 Cases as Tenth Circuit Judge

By Tony Mauro |

The majority of recusals, more than 500, were triggered by the involvement of a "former client or colleague," according to a 51-page appendix to his Senate Judiciary Committee questionnaire that lists all 1,095 cases in which he stepped aside.

A rainbow flag outside the U.S. Supreme Court in 2015.

Transgender Lawyers, Law Students Share Personal Stories in SCOTUS Brief

By Marcia Coyle |

More than 100 transgender individuals, including lawyers, law students and law professors, filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court that presented personal narratives. Cleary Gottlieb's Howard Zelbo, who wrote the brief, said, "The purpose was really to bring to life for the justices who may not know many trans people that transgender people are really like everyone else and have positive stories and make positive contributions to the country. We wanted this to be uplifting, not negative." Two lawyers and two law students who participated in the brief shared their stories with The National Law Journal.

Jones Day's Noel J. Francisco

Trump Picks Former Jones Day Partner as Solicitor General

By Tony Mauro |

Noel Francisco, a former Scalia clerk, has been the principal deputy SG since late January, and on Tuesday night the Trump White House named him as its nominee for the Senate-confirmed position

Demonstrators celebrate the Supreme Court's ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges in June.

53 Companies Back Transgender Teen in SCOTUS Fight

By Marcia Coyle |

Major technology companies and other businesses, warning of the negative business consequences of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling against a transgender boy's sex discrimination claim, on Thursday stepped into a simmering controversy that pits them against the Trump administration.

U.S. Capitol.

What Lawyers Need to Know About Tort Reform Push in Congress

By Amanda Bronstad |

We review four bills set to go before the House Rules Committee this week in one of the most comprehensive efforts at legal reform in more than a decade. Plus, a look at three bills in the pipeline.

Police outside the U.S. Supreme Court moments after the court announced its opinion.  June 26, 2015.

Citing 'My Cousin Vinny,' DC Circuit Upholds SCOTUS Protest Ban

By Tony Mauro |

A federal appeals panel on Friday upheld the law barring anyone from making “a harangue or oration” at the U.S. Supreme Court—the latest in a series of rulings protecting the high court from protesters inside the building or on its grounds.

Miguel Estrada of Gibson Dunn & Crutcher. HANDOUT.

Gibson Dunn Partner Is Next in Spotlight as Possible Solicitor General

By Tony Mauro |

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher partner Miguel Estrada, who has argued 22 cases before the high court, is the latest in a series of lawyers rumored to have a lock on the SG post.

Social Media Gets Some Respect from SCOTUS in First Amendment Case

By Tony Mauro |

Mark the date: Feb. 27, 2017, may go down in history as the day that social media—from Facebook to Snapchat, Twitter to LinkedIn—entered the pantheon of expressions deserving First Amendment protection.

Kellyanne Conway.

Ethics Complaint Against Kellyanne Conway Faces Long Road

By Marcia Coyle |

If past is prologue, the ethics complaint filed by 15 law professors against White House adviser Kellyanne Conway could go nowhere—and take a long time getting there.

U.S. Capitol

A Defense Lawyer’s Take on Class Action Reform

By Amanda Bronstad |

Tort reformers are pushing the most aggressive class action reform legislation in the past decade on Capitol Hill, but even defense lawyers have some concerns.

Samuel Alito.

Justices Pose Tough Questions in Nursing Home Arbitration Case

By Tony Mauro |

Justice Samuel Alito Jr. said of the retirement home cases: "The context here seems different from the arbitration cases that we've had in recent years."

Andrew Olmem.

Two Venable Partners, Including Outspoken Dodd-Frank Critic, Join Trump Team

By C. Ryan Barber |

Two Venable partners, including a former lead Republican negotiator on the post-crisis Dodd-Frank financial reforms who has called the Obama-era regulations "heavy-handed," have joined President Donald Trump's administration. Andrew Olmem, who worked on the Dodd-Frank reforms, will serve at the White House National Economic Council, and Daris Meeks was named director of domestic policy for Vice President Mike Pence.

Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch walks down the hallway inside the Russell Senate Office Building on Wednesday, February 8, 2017.

Neil Gorsuch's 'Law’s Irony' Makes High Court Appearance

By Marcia Coyle |

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch's thinking on deference to federal agencies and the ever-increasing number of federal criminal statutes could make an appearance next week in the U.S. Supreme Court. The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, in an amicus brief, quoted some of Gorsuch's remarks in his speech "Law's Irony," where he questioned whether the scope of U.S. criminal statutes had stretched too far.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Ginsburg Praises Women’s March, Says She is Feeling 'Very Well'

By Tony Mauro |

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who came under fire last summer for her criticism of then-candidate Donald Trump, was asked about the march in a conversation last week with students at the University of Hawaii.

Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch, left, walks down the hallway inside the Russell Senate Office Building to meet with Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) on Wednesday, February 8, 2017.

Neil Gorsuch Once Decried the Ever-Increasing Number of Criminal Laws

By Sue Reisinger |

Neil Gorsuch, standing before an audience of conservative lawyers in Washington several years ago, decried the thousands of federal criminal statutes on the books. "And the spigot keeps pouring, with hundreds of new statutory crimes inked every few years," Gorsuch, now President Trump's Supreme Court nominee, said then. Gorsuch's confirmation would bring some comfort to the white-collar defense bar and business advocates.

Gorsuch Clerk 'Family' Steps Into Spotlight

By Tony Mauro |

With Judge Neil Gorsuch's former law clerks putting aside politics to unite behind his SCOTUS nomination, we have a snapshot of their ranks and where they are now.

Representative Jerrold Nadler (D-NY).

House Democrats Slam Trump's Tweets on Federal Judiciary

By Tony Mauro |

At a hearing Tuesday, discussion of Donald Trump's comments overshadowed other issues before the House Judiciary Committee, including camera and audio broadcast of Supreme Court and the need to improve and lower costs of PACER.

Scalia's chair and the bench were draped in black after his death on Feb. 13.

5 Ways Scalia’s Death Changed the Supreme Court

By Tony Mauro |

It's been a year since the larger-than-life justice died unexpectedly, and in many ways, according to lawyers, the court feels like a different place.

Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch, left, walks down the hallway inside the Russell Senate Office Building to meet with Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) on Wednesday, February 8, 2017.

Gorsuch Scores Points by Distancing Himself From Trump

By Tony Mauro |

Telling senators that the president's tweets criticizing federal judges were “disheartening” and “demoralizing" could cement support among mainstream lawyers, judges and scholars.

U.S. Supreme Court building.

What's Next in Hot-Button Travel Ban Litigation?

By Tony Mauro |

A tangle of possibilities lie on the other side of Tuesday's Ninth Circuit showdown. We look at the possible paths.

President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court Nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, addressing media during a meeting with Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), on February 1, 2017.

Gorsuch Supports Two-Year Law School, but Scalia Dissents

By Marcia Coyle |

Judge Neil Gorsuch and President Barack Obama agree at least on one thing: a third-year of law school should be optional. Gorsuch questioned the need for three years of law school in a September 2015 paper he presented at the United Kingdom-United States Legal Exchange in London. One of Gorsuch's legal heroes—the late Justice Antonin Scalia—vigorously objected to the notion of two-year law school.

U.S. District Judge James Robart of the Western District of Washington

What Seattle Judge Said About Trump Travel Ban—and What Happens Next

By Vanessa Blum |

The decision by Judge James Robart is speeding toward Ninth Circuit review. Here are some key moments from the hearing that will shape the court fight ahead.

Thousands of protestors decended on SFO in response to President Trumps executive order denying refugees and foreign citizens from predominantly Muslim countries entry into the U.S

Beneath the Chaos, Strategies Coalesce in Suits Against Trump

By Amanda Bronstad |

Advocacy groups and state governments are beginning to coordinate their efforts, taking lessons from past court battles over immigration.

Judge Neil Gorsuch shakes hands with President Donald Trump as he is  announced as Trump's choice for Supreme Court Justice during a televised address from the East Room of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2017 (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Gorsuch, Drawing Scalia Comparisons, Comes Under Microscope

By Marcia Coyle |

The U.S. Supreme Court nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch triggered a range of responses across the legal and political spectrum Tuesday as lawyers and advocacy groups touted—and criticized—his positions on regulatory matters and civil rights.

2/1/17- Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg speaks at Virginia Military Institute.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Visits Military Institute Whose Doors She Opened to Women

By Marcia Coyle |

More than two decades after her majority decision opened the all-male bastion of the Virginia Military Institute to women, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Wednesday told a packed hall of the school's cadets that she knew her ruling "would make VMI a better place." Ginsburg told the backstory of the decision and how she and Antonin Scalia went back and forth "like ping pongs"—sharing and reviewing some 17, 18 drafts of their opinions.

Judge Neil Gorsuch.

This Gorsuch Ruling Pans Agency Deference. Here’s Why It Matters to Business

By Tony Mauro |

As business lawyers dissect the nominee's record, they’re likely to celebrate a 2016 decision by Judge Neil Gorsuch that criticizes the "Chevron doctrine" of agency deference and says the time "has come to face the behemoth.”

Judge Neil Gorsuch.

Trump Chooses Neil Gorsuch, Ivy League Conservative, for Supreme Court

By Tony Mauro |

In choosing Neil Gorsuch for the U.S. Supreme Court, President Trump opted for a candidate with traditional credentials shared by most modern-day justices. A Colorado native with a degree from Harvard Law School, Gorsuch clerked for Justice Byron White and Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court. "In our legal order, it is for Congress and not the courts to write new laws. It is the role of judges to apply, not alter, the work of the people’s representatives," Gorsuch said at the White House.

Neil Gorsuch, left, and Oscar the Grouch, right.

Nobody Thinks Trump's SCOTUS Pick Is a Grouch. Except Autocorrect.

By Nate Robson |

Those who know U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neal Gorsuch call him "humble," "down-to earth" and "quite personable." Autocorrect, however, sees the opposite—a "grouch." Social media lit up Tuesday night with tweets and posts referencing President Donald Trump's nomination of "Neil Grouch."

Judge Neil Gorsuch.

Neil Gorsuch: In His Own Words

By Tony Mauro |

Here are some of the Supreme Court nominee's most memorable comments on assisted suicide, the changing work of trial lawyers, and the death of the justice he’s been named to replace.

Judge Neil Gorsuch.

Gorsuch, in First Ruling, Wouldn't Cut a Break for an Undocumented Immigrant

By C. Ryan Barber |

In his first ruling as a federal appeals judge, Neil Gorsuch weighed the merits of a nearly five-year prison sentence imposed on an undocumented immigrant who'd once been deported. Gorsuch, just two months into his tenure on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, wasn't swayed. Gorsuch's long record as a federal appeals judge will come under increasing scrutiny as the U.S. Senate weighs his nomination—announced Tuesday—to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Sally Yates.

Trump's AG Pick Once Told Yates to 'Say No' to Improper Demands

By Vanessa Blum |

Sally Yates answered questions during her 2015 confirmation hearing that seemed to herald her dramatic departure. The irony? It was Sen. Jeff Sessions doing the asking.

Thousands of protestors decended on SFO in response to President Trumps executive order denying refugees and foreign citizens from predominantly Muslim countries entry into the U.S

Immigrant Advocates Plot 'Beginning of Legal Resistance' to Trump

By Marcia Coyle |

More than 4,000 lawyers had signed up to volunteer legal services across the country by Sunday in response to the Trump administration's swift move to restrict immigration travel from seven predominantly Muslim countries. President Donald Trump's executive action Friday brought nationwide confusion—and mass protests—as lawyers, major airlines and national companies struggled to assess the scope of the travel bans.

Thomas Hardiman, left, and Maryanne Trump Barry, right.

Trump's Sister, 'High' on Hardiman for SCOTUS, Doesn't Always Agree With Him

By Marcia Coyle and Tony Mauro |

Donald Trump's sister, federal appeals Judge Maryanne Trump Barry, might be "high" on her colleague Thomas Hardiman as a potential U.S. Supreme Court justice. But Barry and Hardiman are hardly ideological soulmates. By no means an exhaustive search, here are some highlights from cases in which Hardiman and Barry found common ground—and from those disputes where they didn't see eye to eye.

Neil Gorsuch, left, and Anthony Kennedy, right.

Why Gorsuch Nod Would Mark New Triumph for SCOTUS Clerks

By Tony Mauro |

In what would be a Supreme Court first, Neil Gorsuch could share the bench with the justice for whom he clerked—Anthony Kennedy. Some observers say the number for former clerks now on the court raises questions of experiential diversity.

Judge Diane S. Sykes of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

Diane Sykes Once Questioned Pence's 'Evolving' Refugee Policy

By Marcia Coyle |

Federal appeals Judge Diane Sykes, one of President Donald Trump's potential U.S. Supreme Court nominees, had a chance a few months ago to think about Syrian refugees. The outcome of a dispute—over funding from Indiana to a private nonprofit resettlement agency—didn't turn out well for then-Gov. Mike Pence, now vice president. The three-judge panel upheld a preliminary injunction blocking Indiana's move to restrict funding.

Antonin Scalia.

Trump Sets Prime-Time Supreme Court Announcement

By Marcia Coyle |

Trying to suss out how closely President Donald Trump's potential U.S. Supreme Court nominees are to the late Justice Antonin Scalia is not, of course, an exact science. Three recent reports, however, attempt to do just that—weighing the "Scalia-ness" of the next high-court nominee. Trump said he will announce his pick Tuesday night.

(l-r) Neil Gorsuch, Thomas Hardiman, and William Pryor.

Trio of Millionaires Tops Trump SCOTUS Shortlist

By Tony Mauro and Marcia Coyle |

The financial disclosure reports filed in 2015 by Neil Gorsuch, William Pryor Jr., and Thomas Hardiman reflect that each judge holds investments valued at more than $1 million.

Sonia Sotomayor.

Sotomayor Joins High Court Chorus of Confirmation Criticism

By Marcia Coyle |

"Vexing." "Broken." "Not functioning very well." Welcome to the U.S. Supreme Court confirmation process, in the eyes of sitting justices. As President Donald Trump prepares to announce his Supreme Court pick, the oft-criticized Senate confirmation proceedings soon will move into the public eye. The justices have had little good to say about the experience.

Donald Trump.

Whistleblower Lawyers on Alert as Trump Establishes Message Control

By C. Ryan Barber |

News blackouts. Gag orders. Deleted tweets. The early days of President Donald Trump's administration swiftly raised questions about the scope of speech restrictions on federal civil servants. As the White House took control of the public messages delivered through the government's official communication channels, not uncommon for presidential transitions, whistleblower lawyers predicted they'd be busy the next four years. But they also said it was too early to gauge whether the apparent early resistance from purported agency employees would translate into litigation or other legal action that tests workplace protections in the federal bureaucracy.

Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C.

Liberal Lawyers Huddle Up in Hunt for Trump Conflicts

By C. Ryan Barber and Tony Mauro |

Two days after the inauguration, liberal lawyers huddled in downtown Washington to issue a call to action to scour President Donald Trump's web of businesses for any conflicts of interest that could provide fodder for a lawsuit.

<center>Abraham Bonowitz, of the anti-death penalty Abolitionist Action Committee (AAC), is arrested during a protest on the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court.</center>

Slideshow: Unrest, Celebration at Trump Inauguration

By ALM Staff |

Celebrations and unrest unfolded simultaneously Friday in Washington as Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th president of the United States. Supporters of Trump clashed at times with demonstrators.

Jones Day office in Washington, D.C.

12 Jones Day Lawyers Take Key Posts in Trump Administration

By Marcia Coyle and C. Ryan Barber |

Jones Day, whose lawyers served key positions in the Trump presidential transition and litigated against the nation's health insurance law and for other major Republican objectives, will count 12 members in the new Trump administration.

On Inauguration Day, Suit Alleges Police Abuses at Anti-Trump Protest

By C. Ryan Barber |

A lawyer who was providing legal support to Inauguration Day protesters in Washington sued police Friday over claims the authorities responded disproportionately with mass arrests, pepper spray and batons in response to the unrest that swept across downtown.

Richard Painter of the University of Minnesota.

Ethics Guru Richard Painter's Phone Is Ringing Often, Thanks to Trump

By Marcia Coyle |

If the new Trump White House seeks a chief ethics officer, Richard Painter isn't expecting to get that call. But his phone won't remain silent for long. Painter, a former chief White House ethics lawyer for George W. Bush, is in high demand these days for commentary about President Donald Trump and the manifold conflicts of interest presented by his business entanglements at home and around the globe.

Robert Mueller.

Obama's DOJ Urges Justices to Block Suit Against Top Bush-Era Officials

By Marcia Coyle |

Sixteen years after the 2001 terror attacks killed nearly 3,000 people, the Obama administration's acting solicitor general on Wednesday urged the U.S. Supreme Court to block a suit against former George W. Bush officials for their alleged roles in crafting unlawful detention policies.

Noel J. Francisco of Jones Day

Jones Day Partner May Be Next for Trump Administration Post

By Tony Mauro |

Appellate litigator Noel Francisco is departing Jones Day amid rumors that he could soon be tapped for a role in the solicitor general's office.

Donald Trump, left, and John Roberts Jr., right.

The 'Nightmare for Conservatives' Who Will Swear In Trump

By Marcia Coyle |

"Nightmare." "Absolute disaster." "Looked like a dummy." President-elect Donald Trump has lobbed these insults and more at Chief Justice John Roberts Jr.—personal attacks about him, and positions he took in ruling on signature Obama administration cases. On Friday, Roberts will deliver the oath of office to Trump in front of an expected crowd of hundreds of thousands of spectators on the National Mall. Here's a look back at some of Trump's comments about Roberts.

Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.. September 2015. Photo by Mike Scarcella/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

Big Law Associate Takes on Supreme Court Veteran Over NCAA Race-Bias Claims

By Marcia Coyle |

A Morrison & Foerster associate who recently completed a U.S. Supreme Court clerkship will argue Wednesday against former solicitor general Seth Waxman in a major race discrimination case that involves the National Collegiate Athletic Association.

Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL) appears before the Senate Judiciary Committee in Washington during his confirmation hearing to be the next U.S. Attorney General, on Tuesday, January 10, 2017.

Jeff Sessions Tees Up 'Reasonable' Test for Laws DOJ Defends, Drops

By C. Ryan Barber |

The U.S. Justice Department has a duty to enforce and defend federal laws—unless the agency can't do so in a "reasonable way," U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions said Tuesday during his confirmation hearing to be U.S. attorney general.

U.S. Supreme Court building.

High Court Turns Down Case Against Classifieds Site, but Scrutiny Persists

By Marcia Coyle |

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday turned away a Communications Decency Act challenge to the operators of the online advertising site, but the company's owner and operators continue to face criminal allegations in California and increased political scrutiny in Washington.

Paul Smith.

Jenner's Paul Smith on Leaving Big Law, and What's Next

By Marcia Coyle |

Jenner & Block's Paul Smith said he had been thinking for some time about teaching in a more serious way and writing about his more than 30 years as an appellate lawyer. That opportunity has arrived—and after the election, he said, "it felt like the right thing to do." Smith talks with the NLJ's Marcia Coyle on the decision to leave Big Law, and what's next.

Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Jr., now back at his former firm Covington & Burling. June 30, 2015. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

California's Anti-Trump Strategy, Featuring Eric Holder, Will Cost $25K Monthly

By Cheryl Miller and Katelyn Polantz |

California legislative leaders on Wednesday said they have retained a team of Covington & Burling attorneys led by former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. to help fend off "potential challenges" from the incoming Trump administration. The hire follows eight weeks of post-election promises by state Democrats to create a firewall against potential Republican attacks on California's immigration, environmental and health care policies. It also offers a high-visibility platform for Covington, which has long sought a stronger presence on the West Coast.

Roman Martinez of Latham & Watkins. (August 29, 2013.)

An Assistant SG Rejoins Latham After Three-Year Stint

By Marcia Coyle |

Latham & Watkins' Supreme Court and appellate practice will welcome back Roman Martinez, a former associate there who spent the last three years as an assistant to the solicitor general at the U.S. Justice Department. Martinez, a Latham associate from 2010 to 2013, rejoins as a partner in the appellate practice.

DC Circuit Now Has Two Ill-Fated Supreme Court Nominees

By Marcia Coyle |

If there is one judge who might understand Merrick Garland's disappointment, at the expiration of his U.S. Supreme Court nomination on Tuesday, it is perhaps one of his colleagues on the federal appeals bench in Washington: Senior Judge Douglas Ginsburg.

These Are Some of the Best Laugh Lines at the Supreme Court This Year

By Marcia Coyle |

In 2016, the court, as several justices said, was a "grayer place" partly because of the absence of the quickest quipper on the bench, the late Justice Antonin Scalia. But there were some notable moments. Here are some of the highlights.

Chief Justice John Roberts Jr.

Chief Justice Roberts Praises 'Overlooked' District Judges in Year-End Report

By Tony Mauro |

U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. on Saturday spotlighted the "crucial role" played by federal district judges, asserting they "deserve tremendous respect" for performing the often thankless tasks of the job. In past years, Roberts has sometimes used the annual platform to advocate for higher pay for judges, or to defend the ethics of his fellow justices. But his 2016 report displayed no sharp edges or fodder for controversy.

U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C.

Sotomayor's Pro Bono Call, Posner's Digs and Banter on the Bench: Supreme Court 2016

By Marcia Coyle and Tony Mauro |

Justice Antonin Scalia's death in February was one of the biggest stories this year about the U.S. Supreme Court. Sonia Sotomayor urged mandatory pro bono for all lawyers. Richard Posner railed on "stupid" decisions by Chief Justice Roberts. And the court's microphones picked up banter on the bench. Here's a look at some of our most-read stories about the high court.

An amicus brief from the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press featured a collection of historic and contemporary booking photos.

Historic Mug Shots Line New Supreme Court Brief as Court Weighs Privacy Dispute

By C. Ryan Barber |

As the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to weigh a dispute over mug shots, a new amicus brief, backing the Detroit Free Press in its suit, presents a collection of historic and contemporary booking photos. The brief, filed by the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, included the photos to argue that the images have a historical value, building an understanding of the context behind arrests, and should be widely available to the public. A federal appeals court ruling in July cited the privacy interests of defendants in concluding that the U.S. government does not have an obligation under public-records laws to release mug shots.

U.S. Department of Justice.

Teva Agrees to Pay $520M to Resolve Foreign-Bribery Claims

By Charles Toutant |

Generic drugmaker Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. has agreed to pay more than $283 million to resolve criminal charges and fines over bribes to government officials in Russia, Ukraine and Mexico, in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Thursday.

Chief judge Merrick Garland of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

Chief Justice Roberts Shuts Down Bid to Force Garland Vote

By Marcia Coyle |

A long-shot effort to force U.S. Senate action on the Supreme Court nomination of Merrick Garland failed Monday at the hands of Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. Roberts, who, without comment, denied a New Mexico lawyer's emergency application for an injunction in Michel v. McConnell.

AMC Wins Approval, With Concessions, to Acquire Rival Carmike Cinemas

By C. Ryan Barber |

Federal antitrust enforcers on Tuesday approved, with concessions, AMC Entertainment Holding Inc.'s proposed $1.2 billion acquisition of rival Carmike Cinemas Inc., a purchase the U.S. Justice Department said would have otherwise threatened to raise ticket prices in parts of Florida, Georgia, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, among other markets.

Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland, chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, walks to Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT)'s office at the Russell Senate Office Building on March 17, 2016.

Lawyer Turns to Supreme Court to Force Garland Vote

By Marcia Coyle |

President Barack Obama may be giving up on U.S. Senate confirmation of Chief Judge Merrick Garland, his nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court, but a New Mexico lawyer is making one last appeal—this time to the high court itself. Steven Michel of Santa Fe on Thursday filed an emergency application for an injunction that would require Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to schedule a vote on the Garland nomination before Obama's term ends on Jan. 20.

Ashley Madison website.

In Ashley Madison Data-Breach Settlement, FTC Asserts Role as Cyber Cop

By C. Ryan Barber and Mark Hamblett |, a website built to help cheating lovers meet their match, has agreed to settle claims that lax cybersecurity was responsible for a data breach that exposed the personal information of millions of customers last year.

Nancy Erika Smith of Smith Mullin.

Lessons from a Prudential Whistleblower's Lawyers

By C. Ryan Barber |

Catching up with Nancy Erika Smith and her husband Neil, who run the New Jersey whistleblower firm Smith Mullin, about the latest whistleblower scandal to hit Prudential Financial Inc.

U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C.

Justices Extend Prosecutors' Winning Streak in Financial Fraud Enforcement

By Marcia Coyle |

A week after federal prosecutors scored a unanimous victory in a securities law challenge in the U.S. Supreme Court, they notched another win Monday in prosecutions under the federal bank fraud law. In Shaw v. United States, the justices, ruling 8-0, rejected Lawrence Shaw's arguments that the federal crime of bank fraud did not apply to him because he intended to cheat a bank depositor, not a bank.

Slideshow: AT&T, Time Warner CEOs Defend Merger

By ALM staff |

AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson and Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes pitched their companies' $85B merger to U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee members on Wednesday.

U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C.

Whistleblowers Win Key Ruling as Justices Reject Insurer's Case

By Mike Scarcella |

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday handed a big win to whistleblowers, ruling that a violation of the federal False Claims Act's secrecy requirement doesn’t automatically mean a complaint should be dismissed. The unanimous ruling, delivered by Justice Anthony Kennedy, upheld a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. October 9, 2016.

Justices Will Decide Religious Health Systems' Pension Dispute

By Marcia Coyle |

After a lull in adding new cases to the term, the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear arguments in seven challenges, including a trio of cases from religious-affiliated, nonprofit health care systems that are seeking exemptions from federal law for their pension plans.

Mug Shots Are Not Secret Records, Detroit Paper Tells Supreme Court

By Marcia Coyle |

The Detroit Free Press is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse a court decision that restricts public access to the mug shots of federal criminal defendants. Booking photos provide an "important window" into the government's exercise of its police powers, the media outlet said in its petition in Detroit Free Press v. U.S. Department of Justice.

Demonstrators outside the U.S. Supreme Court on the day of arguments in the immigration case United States v. Texas. April 18, 2016. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

Texas Court, After Trump Win, Is Asked to Put Immigration Case on Hold

By Marcia Coyle |

The first major litigation effect of the election of Donald Trump took place in a Texas federal district court Friday when the lawyers in the challenge to the Obama administration's plan to delay deportation of millions of undocumented immigrants asked the judge to postpone proceedings until Feb. 20.

Ted Cruz speaking at the Federalist Society 2016 National Lawyers Convention at The Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, Nov. 18, 2016.

Ted Cruz for SCOTUS? 'History is Long,' Texas Republican Says

By ALM staff |

Sen. Ted Cruz dedicated his address Friday at the Federalist Society convention to the legacy of Justice Antonin Scalia—and the "great hope," for conservatives, that Donald Trump's presidential win delivered. What about the possibility that Cruz will serve on the Supreme Court? "History is long and can take unexpected paths," Cruz, a former Big Law partner, said in response to a question.

Then-Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor meets with Senator Jeff Sessions, R-Alabama, on June 2, 2009.

The Quotable Jeff Sessions: Supreme Court Edition

By Marcia Coyle |

In choosing Alabama Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions as his nominee for U.S. attorney general, President-elect Donald Trump selected a reliably conservative and outspoken critic of some the U.S. Supreme Court's recent and most controversial liberal-leaning rulings. Here's a snapshot of what Sessions had to say on a few of those cases, and about the Supreme Court nominations of Samuel Alito, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.

Senator Jeff Sessions, R-Alabama, is President-elect Donald Trump's pick for U.S. attorney general.

Trump Picks Sessions as U.S. Attorney General

By Zoe Tillman |

The choice of Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Alabama, was heralded by several Senate Republicans and decried by civil rights groups, who have been critical of his record on civil rights and his hardline stance on immigration.

Justice Samuel Alito speaking at the Federalist Society 2016 National Lawyers Convention at The Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, November 17, 2016.

Uncertainty About Trump Doesn't Dampen Optimism at Federalist Society Convention

By Marcia Coyle |

Optimism, both cautious and unreserved following the election of Donald Trump, flowed through crowded halls of Washington's Mayflower Hotel on Thursday as the conservative Federalist Society opened its annual national convention.

United States Supreme Court

Nine of Trump's Potential High Court Picks to Appear at Federalist Society Convention

By Marcia Coyle |

Nine of President-elect Donald Trump's 21 potential U.S. Supreme Court nominees will find themselves in a sea of enthusiastic faces later this week during the Federalist Society's annual national convention in Washington.

Demonstrators outside the U.S. Supreme Court on the day of arguments in the immigration case United States v. Texas. April 18, 2016.

Obama's Hundreds of Executive Orders, Under Trump Microscope

By Marcia Coyle |

Eight years ago, a newly elected President Barack Obama and his team sifted through the 291 executive orders that were issued during President George W. Bush's two terms. President-elect Donald Trump now faces a similar task—with a nearly equal number of executive orders.

U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. October 9, 2016.

Trump's Stunning Win: What We're Watching

By ALM staff |

Beth Frerking, The National Law Journal's editor in chief, on Wednesday discussed how President-elect Donald Trump's upset victory Tuesday could create a new regulatory landscape in Washington. And how the Republican is poised to return the U.S. Supreme Court to a conservative-led majority.

Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Sartorial Dissent? Ruth Bader Ginsburg's Neckwear After Trump Election

By Marcia Coyle |

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Wednesday appeared to sport her "dissenting" jabot—the one she wears when she reads from her dissenting opinion. The style and color differ than her more usual white neckwear.

President-elect Donald Trump holds Vice-President-elect Mike Pence's hand as he gives his acceptance speech during his election night rally, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016, in New York.

Trump's Victory Will Reshape Financial Rules, Supreme Court

By C. Ryan Barber and Rebekah Mintzer |

President-elect Donald Trump on the campaign called for the repeal of the Wall Street reform law Dodd-Frank, and he advocated for U.S. Supreme Court justices in the mold of the late Antonin Scalia. We take a snapshot of Trump's transformative regulatory positions as a new day unfolds in the nation's capital.

U.S. Supreme Court.

Trump's Win Will Change the Supreme Court, but Not 'Automatically'

By Tony Mauro |

President-elect Donald Trump said during the last debate in October that if he became president, the U.S. Supreme Court would "automatically" overturn Roe v. Wade, sending the contentious issue of abortion back to the states. But the high court does not make change "automatically"—or quickly.

Media cameras outside the U.S. Supreme Court on the day of arguments in the immigration case United States v. Texas.  April 18, 2016.

Supreme Court Webcast, for Scalia Memorial, Will Be a First

By Marcia Coyle |

The U.S. Supreme Court, in a first for the institution, will live stream a portion of a memorial Friday for the late Justice Antonin Scalia.