Friday, October 4, 2019

The First Monday in October

When the 2019-2020 Supreme Court Term opens on Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court will try out a new rule that the lawyers will have two minutes to talk before the Justices interrupt them with questions. Read more about the new rule here.

In the early days of the Republic, arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court might go on for a couple of days. Today arguments are limited to an hour (half an hour for each side).

Cases consolidated for argument can also be limited to an hour even though there are two cases being heard. We'll see that on Tuesday October 8 when the U.S. Supreme Court will hear two consolidated cases in one hour: Bostock v. Clayton County and Altitude Express, Inc. v. Zarda. Those two cases involve the question of whether Title VII extends to sexual orientation discrimination. That consolidated argument will be followed by R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes, Inc. v. EEOC, a case that will consider whether Title VII extends to gender identity. These three cases are the first LGBT cases to come before the Supreme Court following the departure of Justice Anthony Kennedy, who was often the "swing vote" in earlier LGBT cases.

Hat tip to Heather Baxter for sharing news of the new, two-minute no questions rule.


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