Citations to Briefs in Oral Arguments and Opinions
While main party briefs give the justices fodder to argue for or (more often in this analysis) against, amicus briefs provide relevant information to the justices often not presented in the main party briefs. For instance Justice Breyer cited the R Street Institute’s amicus briefs in Google v. Oracle for the proposition that, “Some of the amici refer to what Google did as ‘reimplementation,’ defined as the ‘building of a system . . . that repurposes the same words and syntaxes’ of an existing system—in this case so that programmers who had learned an existing system could put their basic skills to use in a new one.”
Some amicus briefs are cited more frequently than others. In a few rare occasions this term amicus briefs were cited more than once in cases, highlighting the importance of the briefs to the justices. These instances include cites to the R Street Institute’s brief in Google v. Oracle. The following graph shows these examples.