Friday, September 29, 2006

comments from oral arguments

Counsel: Judge, I'm very disappointed that you don't agree with me.
Judge B: I'd be disappointed too, if I were you.

Counsel: Sorry I don't recall all the details. Trial was a year ago, and you can't expect a 60-year old man to remember everything.
[Pause as he realizes that all of the judges on the panel are well over 60.]
Not that 60 is old or anything.

Government counsel: The defendant only got a 35-year sentence, instead of the mandatory life sentence he could have gotten.
Judge A: But wasn't he older, like 61 or so?
Judge D: Be careful; you're on dangerous ground.

[In a case involving a very complex and confusing contract.]
Counsel: I didn't write this contract, by the way.
Judge C: That's a really good disclaimer to make.

[In a case where the Supreme Court reversed the Tenth Circuit's previous decision.]
Counsel: We did the best we could, but we couldn't get the Supreme Court to agree with you.

Government counsel: I flipped a coin with my co-counsel to decide which of us would argue the case and which would be subject to water-torture. I lost.

Defense counsel: The confession wasn't voluntary because the police told the defendant that he had cancer, so he was really upset.
Government counsel: The police weren't trying to upset him. They just asked him about it to be friendly.
. . . .
Judge A: At least if we watch Law & Order, it seems like this was intended to rattle him.
Government counsel: They just said, "How are you doing? Are you okay, because we heard you might have cancer. Do you have cancer?" No one would be upset by that. It's like if the government said, "Are you part of Al-Qaeda? No? Okay then." You wouldn't be upset by that.
. . . .
Government counsel: It wouldn't affect you if I said, "Good morning, judge. I heard you broke your hip last week."
Judge E: I'm not going to die from a broken hip.
Government counsel: How about "I heard you have a brain aneurism"?
Judge E: Well, I might take offense at that.
. . . .
Judge D [to counsel in the next case]: Are you sure you're feeling okay today?
Judge E: Because we've got something to tell you.

This became the joke of the day. "How are you guys doing? Do you have cancer? I heard you might have cancer. No? Well, how about a brain aneurism?"


Nectar said...

Very funny. I enjoyed these exchanges very much.

Rosie said...

That's really funny. Would you be offended if someone asked you if you had cancer? I don't think I would, but if they said something about my brain, that would bother me.