Saturday, November 17, 2007

Let us sing of legends

Most of you don't give a damn about Moot Court. Even its name implies that it's unimportant. But yesterday an act of heroism occured and I must be its chronicler.

Our school sent two teams. Each team member focused on one issue. I was our team's expert on FAAAA preemption, and Erin handled the issue for our other team.

Erin's team qualified for the first knockout round, and the judicial panel for that round was seriously hostile. They had reviewed just about every case in the area and tried their damnedest to destroy the positions of the parties. The questions often began with phrases like "Oh, come on, counsel, are you saying that..." or "You've told me three times that you've conceded this issue..."

Erin handled the situation with grace and aplomb, and stuck to her guns. At one point, she told the court that Morales required a state law to have a forbidden significant effect on the federal law to be preempted. The judge asked her, "Where in Morales does it say that?"

Without missing a beat - without looking at her notes - Erin said "Page 389, Your Honor."

She was right.

Nobody memorizes pinpoint cites. Erin didn't memorize pinpoint cites. And yet, she knew.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Damn, that is amazing. I did my oral arguments this week for moot court (only here we call it appellate advocacy) and I was terrible. "I am co-counsel for...appellant and...I'llbeaddressingwhether... (looks at notes) section 43(a) of the, um, Lanham Act requires..."

And so on and so forth.

It sounds like everyone else did a terrible job too, so maybe I'll get selected to the second team.