As you might expect, there has been a lot of press coverage of yesterday's argument in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion. You can read the transcript for yourself here. The California Supreme Court's Discover Bank opinion is a central focus of the discussion, as is a mythic "9,000-foot cow."
Here is an excerpt from the Washington Post's report:
But what had been billed as an epic battle played out during the one-hour oral argument more like a law school seminar on contract law: Phrases such as "contract of adhesion," "obstacle preemption" and "unconscionability" dominated the debate.
The justices' questions suggested a more limited ruling on the facts of the specific case rather than the broad decision on class-action suits that the 26 groups submitting friend-of-the-court briefs had addressed.
The arguments also raised questions about states' rights. State and federal courts in California agreed with a state law that said businesses' attempts to ban arbitration class-action suits unfairly tilt the field against consumers. And some justices indicated that the decision should be up to the states.
"Who are we to say that the state is wrong about that?" Justice Elena Kagan asked.
The New York Times reports that "Supreme Court Weighs Class Action Suits."
Dahlia Lithwick's article at Slate is called "Can You Hear Them Now? The Supreme Court reads the fine print on your cell phone contract." She predicts a consumer win.
In a similar vein, Law.com reports: "Class Actions on the Ropes? Not Likely."
The New York Law Journal believes that "Justices' Comments Offer Hope for Class Action Litigators" (subscription).
ADR Prof Blog has a guest post on the argument by Professor Jean Sternlight of Boyd School of Law at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.