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09 March 2006

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frank cross

The research makes clear that much of the better oral argument had to do with the quality of the legal argumentation. There was no good way to control for it. The results don't necessarily show that oral argument is influential but does suggest that quality legal argumentation is influential.

William Henderson

If I have a better case on the merits, isn't it easier to give a compelling oral argument? I would be interested how they control for merit--well scored oral arguments that resulted in reversals versus well scored oral arguments the produced an affirmance of the lower court?

As a appellate clerk, I was skeptical of the role of oral arguments. But it might be different at the Supreme Court where judges are more consciously making law rather than following it.

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