Thursday, November 3, 2011

D.C. Circuit: Belated Observation about the Health Care Argument

Writing about the Eleventh Circuit and oral argument audio earlier today reminded me of an observation I had related to the D.C. Circuit's health care oral argument back in September.

The D.C. Circuit allows public access to audio only after a case is closed, meaning after all appeals, remands, etc., are completed. Only the Eleventh Circuit's to-be-changed policy, discussed earlier today, is more restrictive (no public access). The D.C. Circuit has shown interest in improving its electronic offerings, including possible audio access, but so far, the strict audio policy remains.

Unlike the Eleventh Circuit, the D.C. Circuit did not make an exception to allow public access to audio from its health care argument. The fact that only those in the courtroom could hear the argument may be one reason why it was "under-reported" or got "very little press attention," as prominent blogs wrote at the time.