May 7, 2008

U.S. Supreme Court Will Consider Cert Petition in Philip Morris v. Williams at May 22 Conference

We previously blogged about Philip Morris's petition for review from the Oregon Supreme Court's decision on remand in Philip Morris v. Williams. The Supreme Court is set consider that petition during its May 22 conference, according to the online docket.

It will be quite interesting to see whether the Supreme Court grants this petition. Many observers viewed the Oregon Supreme Court's opinion as a slap in the face (or more colorful metaphors) to the Supreme Court. My co-blogger Jeremy Rosen suggested that a summary reversal might be in order. On the other hand, Howard Bashman considered the case an "unattractive vehicle" for certiorari, since the Oregon Supreme Court couched its decision in terms of Oregon procedural law, rather than federal constitutional principles.

SCOTUSblog has identified this petition as one of its "Petitions to Watch," meaning that Tom Goldstein at Akin Gump thinks the petition has a reasonable chance of being granted. SCOTUSblog also provides links to all the briefing at the petition stage, including the petition, the brief in opposition, the reply, and amicus briefs by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Washington Legal Foundation, Associated Oregon Industries, and the Products Liability Advisory Council.