Yesterday the Court kicked off the April sitting with one oral argument and orders from its April 13 Conference, including one grant.

At yesterday’s oral argument in Christopher v. SmithKline Beecham Corp., the Justices considered whether pharmaceutical sales representatives fall under the “outside salesman” exemption of the Fair Labor Standards Act.  In his report on the oral argument, Mark Sherman of the Associated Press concludes that the “questions at Monday’s argument suggested the court could divide in unusual ways, not along ideological lines”; Adam Liptak of the New York Times also has coverage, as do Reuters and the International Business Times. [Disclosure:  The law firm of Goldstein & Russell, P.C., whose attorneys contribute to this blog in various capacities, represents the petitioners in Christopher, but the author of this post is not involved in the case.]

The Court also granted certiorari in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, in which the Justices will consider whether U.S. laws prohibit copyrighted material from being legally purchased overseas and then resold in the United States without the permission of the copyright holder.  In 2010, in Costco v. Omega, the Court heard oral argument on the same question but divided four to four, with Justice Kagan recused.  Lyle Denniston of this blog has coverage of the grant, as do Greg Stohr of Bloomberg, Mark Sherman of the Associated Press, David Kravets of Wired, James Vicini of Reuters, and Keith Perine of Politico.

Other attention focused on the cases in which the Court denied certiorari yesterday –particularly the Court’s denial of a petition filed by former Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling, seeking to overturn his criminal conviction because of an error by the trial judge. Greg Stohr of Bloomberg, JURIST, the Associated Press, and Reuters all have coverage. The Court also declined to review cases involving the application of the ministerial exception to sexual harassment claims (Associated Press), and NFL arbitration (Associated Press).

Today the Justices will hear one hour of oral argument in two consolidated cases — Dorsey v. United States and Hill v. United Statesinvolving the application of the Fair Sentencing Act of 2010 to those convicted of crack cocaine trafficking offenses before the Act went into effect. David Savage previews the case for the Los Angeles Times.


–          At this blog, Ronald Mann previews next week’s oral argument in RadLAX Gateway Hotel, LLC v. Amalgamated Bank, describing it as perhaps “the most important business bankruptcy case” since 1999. 

–          At Dorf on Law, Lisa McElroy reflects on the recent gathering of Justices O’Connor, Ginsburg, Sotomayor, and Kagan: “it was about the sisterhood, about the visual, about the montage of these four everyday women who, through four well-placed strikes of lightning, became extraordinary.”

Posted in Round-up

Recommended Citation: Nabiha Syed, Tuesday round-up, SCOTUSblog (Apr. 17, 2012, 9:27 AM),