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Florida and the Future of Trade Policy - Event Audio/Video

2017 Annual Florida Chapters Conference
Alice Ancona, Stephen Ezell, Thomas Palley, Bryan Riley, Morgan W. Streetman, Daniel Woodring February 10, 2017

This panel, Florida and the Future of Trade Policy, was held on February 4, 2017, at the 2017 Florida Chapters Conference at Disney's BoardWalk Inn at the Walt Disney World® Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.

Florida and the Future of Trade Policy
9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.

  • Alice Ancona, Director of Global Outreach for the Florida Chamber of Commerce
  • Stephen Ezell, Vice President, Global Innovation Policy, Information Technology and Innovation Foundation
  • Dr. Thomas Palley, Senior Economic Policy Advisor, AFL-CIO
  • Bryan Riley, Jay Van Andel Senior Policy Analyst, Trade Policy, The  Heritage Foundation
  • Moderator: Judge Jonathan Gerber, Florida Fourth District Court of Appeal
  • Introduction: Morgan W. Streetman, Founder and Principal, Streetman Law
  • Remarks: Daniel Woodring, Principal Attorney, Woodring Law Firm

Disney's Boardwalk Inn
Lake Buena Vista, FL

Will International Law Matter to the Trump Administration? - Event Audio/Video

International Law in the Trump Era: Expectations, Hopes, and Fears
John B. Bellinger, III, Rosa Brooks, David Stewart January 27, 2017

The Federalist Society's Practice Group and Student Divisions and the American Branch of the International Law Association (ABILA) are pleased to present a half-day conference on the future of international and national law under freshly inaugurated President Trump. This panel will feature a lively discussion between leading international lawyers the Hon. John Bellinger and Associate Dean and Professor Rosa Brooks about whether international law will matter to the new administration. The luncheon panel will be moderated by Professor David Stewart.

This panel was part of the conference on International Law in the Trump Era: Expectations, Hopes, and Fears held on January 23, 2017, at Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, DC.

Luncheon Panel: Will International Law Matter to the Trump Administration?
12:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.

  • Hon. John B. Bellinger, III, former Legal Adviser, U.S. Department of State and the National Security Council
  • Prof. Rosa Brooks, Associate Dean, Graduate Programs & Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center
  • Moderator: Prof. David Stewart, President, American Branch of the International Law Association (ABILA)

Georgetown University Law Center
Washington, DC

What is the Future of Trade Law? - Event Audio/Video

International Law in the Trump Era: Expectations, Hopes, and Fears
Timothy J. Keeler, John O. McGinnis, Alvaro Santos, Matthew R.A. Heiman January 27, 2017

The Federalist Society's Practice Group and Student Divisions and the American Branch of the International Law Association (ABILA) are pleased to present a half-day conference on the future of international and national law under freshly inaugurated President Trump. This first panel will focus on the future of trade law, under a president who made free trade agreements like the Trans-Pacific Partnership and NAFTA a campaign issue.

This panel was part of the conference on International Law in the Trump Era: Expectations, Hopes, and Fears held on January 23, 2017, at Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, DC.

Panel 1: What is the Future of Trade Law?
9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

  • Prof. Timothy J. Keeler, Former Chief of Staff, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR)
  • Prof. John O. McGinnis, Former Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legal Counsel, Department of Justice
  • Prof. Alvaro Santos, Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center
  • Moderator: Mr. Matthew R. A. Heiman, Former Attorney Advisor, U.S. Department of Justice for the National Security Division

Georgetown University Law Center
Washington, DC

Venezuela v. Helmerich & Payne International - Post-Argument SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 1-4-17 featuring Trey Childress
Donald Earl "Trey" Childress January 04, 2017

On November 2, 2016, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in Venezuela v. Helmerich & Payne International. Helmerich & Payne International Drilling Company owns a subsidiary that, in 2007, contracted to provide Venezuela's state-owned oil corporation the use of Helmerich’s drilling rigs. When unpaid invoices to the state-owned company surpassed $100 million in 2009, Helmerich refused to renew the contract and prepared to remove its equipment. Employees of the Venezuelan corporation, along with the Venezuelan National Guard, blockaded the equipment yards, and then-President Hugo Chavez issued a Decree of Expropriation. 

Helmerich sued in federal district court under the expropriation and commercial activity exceptions to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act. Venezuela moved to dismiss, and the district court granted the motion with respect to the expropriation claim but denied it with respect to the commercial activity claim. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit reversed, holding that because the expropriation claim was neither insubstantial nor frivolous, the district court should not have granted the motion to dismiss that claim--but should have dismissed the commercial activity claim because the subsidiary’s commercial activity had no “direct effect” in the United States.

The question before the Supreme Court is whether the pleading standard for alleging that a case falls within the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act’s expropriation exception is more demanding than the standard for pleading jurisdiction under the federal-question statute, which allows a jurisdictional dismissal only if the federal claim is wholly insubstantial and frivolous. 

To discuss the case, we have Donald Earl “Trey” Childress III, who is Professor of Law at the Pepperdine University School of Law.

RJR Nabisco, Inc. v. The European Community - Post-Decision SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 7-12-16 featuring Cory Andrews
Cory L. Andrews July 12, 2016

On June 20, 2016, the Supreme Court decided RJR Nabisco, Inc. v. The European Community. The European Community and 26 of its member states sued RJR Nabisco (RJR) in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, alleging that RJR conducted a global money-laundering enterprise in violation of several laws, including the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), a federal statute. The alleged RICO enterprise involved the importation of illegal drugs into European countries by Colombian and Russian criminal organizations, with RJR helping to launder their drug money through a cigarette import-purchase scheme. Applying a presumption against extraterritorial application of federal law, the district court dismissed The European Community’s civil RICO claim. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit vacated that judgment and reinstated the RICO claim, however, concluding that various alleged predicates for RICO liability had been intended by Congress to apply extraterritorially, and that other offenses asserted sufficiently important domestic activity to come within RICO’s coverage. RJR subsequently obtained a writ of certiorari from the U.S. Supreme Court on the following question: whether, or to what extent, RICO applies extraterritorially.  

By a vote of 4-3, the Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the Second Circuit and remanded the case. Justice Alito delivered the opinion of the Court, which determined that the question of RICO’s extraterritorial application really divides into two questions: (1) Do RICO’s substantive prohibitions, contained in §1962, apply to conduct that occurs in foreign countries? (2) Does RICO’s private right of action, contained in §1964(c), apply to injuries that are suffered in foreign countries? On the first question, the Court held that under the facts asserted in this case, RICO’s prohibitions did apply extraterritorially. On the second question, however, the Court held that §1964(c)’s private right of action did not overcome the presumption against extraterritoriality, and thus a private RICO plaintiff must allege and prove a domestic injury. Because in this case an earlier stipulation had resulted in waiver and dismissal of respondents’ domestic claims, the Court explained, their remaining RICO damages claims rest entirely on injury suffered abroad and must be dismissed.

Justice Alito’s majority opinion was joined in full by the Chief Justice and Justices Kennedy and Thomas, and as to Parts I, II, and III by Justices Ginsburg, Breyer, and Kagan. Justice Ginsburg filed an opinion concurring in part, dissenting in part, and dissenting from the judgment, in which Justices Breyer and Kagan joined. Justice Breyer filed an opinion concurring in part, dissenting in part, and dissenting from the judgment. Justice Sotomayor took no part in the consideration or decision of the case.

To discuss the case, we have Cory L. Andrews, who is senior litigation counsel for the Washington Legal Foundation.