Havelka and Settles Summarize Oral Arguments in SCOTUS Raisins Taking Case

In a Law360 article titled "For High Court, 2 Scoops of Raisins In This Case," Shook, Hardy & Bacon Partner Ann Peper Havelka and Associate Jara Settles provide an overview of the arguments in a U.S. Supreme Court case challenging the U.S. Department of Agriculture's program requiring raisin farmers to set aside a portion of their yield to give to the federal government to aid in stabilizing the market. They document the questions and responses during oral argument, noting the issues that interested the justices, including Justice Stephen Breyer's point that compensation for the alleged taking may have been paid in the form of increased raisin prices and Justice Samuel Alito's concern over whether a similar program could be instituted for other products, such as cell phones or cars.

“Despite the government’s defense of a decades-old price stabilization plan, the court’s questioning during oral argument leaned toward the plaintiff," they conclude. "If the court’s discussion from the bench is any indication, the reserve program may soon shrivel in the sun. Once the court has chewed over the arguments, the Hornes will have their answer after a decade of litigation."