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Thurgood Marshall Moot Court Team Places Third

March 22, 2011

Baylor Law students Reagan Vernon and Pamela Sieja placed third at the Thurgood Marshall Memorial Moot Court Competition, which was held in Washington, D.C., March 17-18. The team was coached by Baylor Law Professor Rory Ryan. The competition is sponsored by the Young Lawyers division of the Federal Bar Association.

This year's problem dealt with two main issues. The first was whether state procedures that do not afford a defendant at least one appeal agree with the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment. The second was whether the McCarran-Ferguson Act reverse preempts the Federal Arbitration Act.

The competition broke to 16 teams after two preliminary rounds in the D.C. Superior Courthouse. The break rounds were argued in the United States Court of Federal Claims. There, Reagan and Pamela won their Octafinal matchup and their Quarterfinal matchup against Seton Hall.

"They again won orally in the semifinal round, but unlike many competitions, the brief score still counted fully in the semifinals, and they narrowly lost to the eventual champion UC-Hastings on the brief," Ryan said. "The competition did award third place by comparing the total points awarded to the semifinalists throughout the competition, and Regan and Pamela won third place over the other semifinalist."

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