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Legal Bisnow
    November 16, 2012  
Expect SCOTUS to

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The odds are good that SCOTUS will hear a DOMA case next term, says Georgetown Law associate dean Nan Hunter.

We saw Nan last night with EEOC commish Chai Feldblum (a fellow G’town law prof who took a leave to serve as commissioner) at Paul Hastings for the Williams Institute’s post-election wrap-up. If DOMA is granted cert, we may not see it on the docket until March or April since much of the argument panel is already filled. Nan's also hoping for action on employment discrimination; the fastest way to get job protection is an executive order from the president designating sexual orientation a protected class, which applies to federal contractors. Congress could also pass legislation.

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Civitas Public Affairs founder Patrick Guerriero, Williams Institute founding director Brad Sears, DHS's Matt Nosanchuk, and Baker McKenzie's Floyd Mills (whom we saw again later last night at NAWL's annual gala with colleagues including DC MP Liz Stern and antitrust partner Katie Funk). Brad, who'd just come from a congressional briefing on LGBT equality, then headed to New York for the Institute’s next election event with NYU Law professor Kenji Yoshino.

There are a busy seven weeks ahead for Joint Economic Committee executive director Will Hansen, right, but he made time to come by and assure us that the much-referenced “fiscal cliff” is in reality more of a slope. Williams Institute distinguished scholar Gary Gates, left—one of the panelists along with Nan, Patrick, and Human Rights Campaign president Chad Griffin—presented an analysis of the impact of the LGBT vote on the election. He says Obama snagged the most LGBT votes in American history, which helped his wins in swing states. If Romney had won 51% of the LGBT vote, the popular vote would have been his.

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Celebrating 40 for NWLC

The same night, we also stopped at the Hilton for the National Women's Law Center's 40th anniversary awards dinner. Last year's keynote was President Obama, and this year we saw a panel with honorees Garry Trudeau (Pulitzer-prize winning Doonesbury cartoonist), Brandeis law professor Anita Hill, and recent Georgetown Law grad Sandra Fluke. NPR's Emmy award-winning host Michel Martin moderated; she's at left with with NWLC co-presidents Nancy Duff Campbell and Marcia Greenberger.

NWLC started in a Dupont townhouse on 20th street 40 years ago; since then it's helped bring the country's first Title IX case and get the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act passed. Over 2,000 people came to celebrate, including the NAACP Legal Defense Fund's first female president Elaine Jones (also the first African-American woman to attend UVA Law) with Johns Hopkins' Susan Ness.

BNY Mellon GC and former special counsel to President Clinton Jane Sherburne chaired the event, and her colleagues came out in support: managing director Douglas MacInnes, Steve Trombetta, Chris Cesare, and Dennis Fleishman.

What Is: Legal Trivia?

Last night, 11 teams of attorneys gathered at Kirkland & Ellis in the sixth annual Lawyers for Literacy trivia challenge, benefiting educational nonprofit Everybody Wins! DC. Last year’s winner was Covington, with Alston & Bird in second. We snapped this year’s Alston & Bird team gearing up with drinks and food: Stephanie Beauvais DennigStephanie DenneyLou DennigKaren HinsonDan KleinBrad Miliauskas, and FDA practice head Marc Scheineson. Rival teams hailed from Kirkland, Skadden, Sidley, Troutman, Wilson Sonsini, and White & Case. The result: a three-way tie (with a tie-breaker about Brett Favre), ending with Wilson Sonsini in first and Alston in second.

EW!DC executive director Mary Salander, flanked by board member and Sidley partner Dick Belanger and quiz master Neal Racioppo (who is a marketing director by day). See if you can answer some of the questions below to start your weekend off right:

Which Supreme Court Justice performed Rush Limbaugh's third wedding?

What titular TV character works at the law firm of Stern, Lockhart & Gardner?

Mary Robinson graduated from Harvard Law in 1968 and went on to be the seventh president of what country?
The correct answers are Clarence Thomas, The Good Wife (Alicia Florrick), and Ireland. Send story ideas to Roksana@bisnow.com.
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