Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Scalia likes My Cousin Vinny and Marisa Tomei
Posted by David Markus
Here's a piece of the article (HT: ABL):
Before signing copies of his book, Making Your Case: The Art of Persuading Judges, (which came out more than a year ago) Scalia dished a few pointers to the spillover crowd of mostly senior citizens who gathered at the Friendship Heights Village Center in Chevy Chase, Md. "Don't beat a dead horse," the justice advised lawyers who are making oral arguments. "Be brief. And when your time expires, shut up and sit down."
To make his point, Scalia said the late Chief Justice William Rehnquist "used to stop you mid-sentence when the red light went on" in the Supreme Court.
Another pet peeve? Acronyms in brief writing and oral arguments, Scalia said, advising lawyers "Don't burden your reader." In the book, co-authored by Bryan Garner, the two also recommend that lawyers study a judge's background and likes and dislikes before they appear in court. "At the very least, these details will humanize the judge before you, so that you will be arguing to a human being instead of a chair."
On My Cousin Vinny and Marisa Tomei:
But he did get some hearty laughter when he was asked to reveal what his favorite legal movie is.
Scalia didn't hesitate: "My Cousin Vinny," he replied. "I can watch that over and over again."
Then, speaking about the character actress Marisa Tomei played in the movie, Scalia added, "God, she's a killer."