Students Visit Supreme Court for Oral Arguments


Lecturer in Law Nathan Lewin (center) and his students with Justice Elena Kagan at the Supreme Court.

Columbia Law School students in the Religious Minorities in Supreme Court Litigation seminar taught by Lecturer in Law Nathan Lewin traveled to Washington, D.C., on Feb. 22, to hear oral arguments in the U.S. Supreme Court and to meet privately with Justice Elena Kagan and Principal Deputy Solicitor General of the United States Noel John Francisco, who is currently serving as acting solicitor general of the United States.

The students attended the oral argument for Kindred Nursing Centers Limited Partnership v. Clark, which considers whether the Federal Arbitration Act pre-empts a state-law contract rule that singles out arbitration by requiring a power of attorney to expressly refer to arbitration agreements before the attorney-in-fact can bind her principal to an arbitration agreement. Andrew Pincus ’81 presented the petitioner's oral argument, and afterwards he met with the Law School students at the Washington office of Mayer Brown, where he is a partner.


Lewin and students with Deputy Solicitor General Noel Francisco (center) at the Justice Department.

The annual Supreme Court field trip is a highlight of Lewin’s seminar, which he has taught for more than two decades. Traditionally, students met with Lewin’s Harvard Law School classmate and friend Justice Antonin Scalia, and after he died in February 2016, Kagan agreed to host them.

Lewin is a familiar presence at the Supreme Court: He argued 12 cases when he was worked in the Justice Department for Solicitors General Archibald Cox and Thurgood Marshall. Since entering private practice, he has argued 16 more times before the Supreme Court. A founding partner of Miller Cassidy Larroca and Lewin, which was one of the nation's foremost litigation “boutiques” for more than 30 years, Lewin is now a partner in Lewin & Lewin, with his daughter Alyza D. Lewin, who has also argued before the Supreme Court.


Lewin and students with Andrew Pincus ’81 (fifth from the right) after his oral arguments at the Supreme Court.



Posted March 16, 2017