Here’s one indication of the U.S. Supreme Court’s interest in the difficult policy questions presented in City of Grants Pass v. Johnson: In the case considering whether the Oregon town’s public-camping ordinance violated the Eighth Amendment, oral argument clocked in at just under two-and-a-half hours. 

Our Litigator of the Week, Theane Evangelis of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher was at the podium for the city. Late last month the court handed down a 6-3 decision finding that the penalties associated with the town ordinance did not amount to cruel and unusual punishment. The decision overturned Martin v. City of Boise, a 2018 Ninth Circuit decision that many officials in the American West contended constrained their ability to address the homelessness crisis. Although Evangelis has argued appeals across the country, this was her first Supreme Court argument.