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Logical Transition Examples—To Conclude

Unsure of how to close out that brief? Conclude with aplomb by using short, light transition words like the pros!

  • Case citations have been replaced by “. . .” to shorten these passages and to allow you to digest them more easily.


  1. Example from Justice Scalia: “Because Shatzer experienced a break in Miranda custody lasting more than two weeks between the first and second attempts at interrogation, Edwards does not mandate suppression of his March 2006 statements. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment of the Court of Appeals of Maryland, and remand the case for further proceedings not inconsistent with this opinion.”
  2. Example from Justice Kagan: “The District Court determined that Padilla ‘did not announce a new rule for Teague purposes,’ and therefore should apply to Chaidez’s case. . . . It then found that Chaidez’s counsel had performed deficiently under Padilla and that Chaidez suffered prejudice as a result. Accordingly, the court vacated Chaidez’s conviction.”
  3. Example from Lisa Blatt: “If respondents are PRPs, their unauthorized restoration remedy undisputedly constitutes the kind of unauthorized ‘remedial action’ that § 122(e)(6) bars. Indeed, Montana law requires plaintiffs seeking restoration damages to actually remediate their property. . . . Accordingly, as PRPs, respondents cannot invoke state law to compel unauthorized remedial action.”

All in all

  1. Example from Justice Scalia: “The Riegels’ reading of § 808.1(d)(1), however, would allow a claim for tortious mislabeling to escape pre-emption so long as such a claim could also be brought against objects other than medical devices. All in all, we think that § 808.1(d)(1) can add nothing to our analysis but confusion.”
  2. Example from Justice Kagan: “And the idea collides with another core precept of standing law. All in all, the majority’s justifications turn standing law from a pillar of a restrained judiciary into nothing more than “a lawyer’s game.”
  3. Example from Justice Gorsuch: “Counsel then agreed that ‘[t]hose contacts’ would not establish jurisdiction and pointed this Court to Norfolk Southern’s ‘consent’ to suit in Pennsylvania. . . . All in all, it was a prosaic response to a simple question about why Mr. Mallory filed suit where he did. Nor, contrary to the dissent’s suggestion, are we alone in discussing the company’s in-state contacts; the lower court, the company, and the dissent all point to them too.”


  1. Example from Chief Justice Roberts: “The question is whether the Avena judgment has binding effect in domestic courts under the Optional Protocol, ICJ Statute, and U.N. Charter. Consequently, it is unnecessary to resolve whether the Vienna Convention is itself ‘self-executing’ or whether it grants Medellin individually enforceable rights.”
  2. Example from Justice Jackson: “And the FDA abrogates this Court’s escheatment precedents on this very basis. . . . Consequently, the inherent characteristics of money orders are not the only relevant point of similarity between money orders and the Disputed Instruments; in addition, they both would otherwise escheat inequitably under the secondary common-law rule due to the business practices of the company holding the funds.”
  3. Example from David Frederick: “In short, Congress’s use of ‘including’ does not support the assertion that ‘pay for time lost’ is a ‘form of money remuneration for services rendered.’ . . . Consequently, when Congress deleted ‘including remuneration paid for time lost’ from the RRTA’s definition of compensation, it removed a discrete element, not an illustrative example otherwise already encompassed within the meaning of ‘remuneration for services rendered.’”


  1. Example from Justice Kagan: “Those concerns, we recognized in Shepard, counsel against allowing a sentencing court to ‘make a disputed’ determination ‘about what the defendant and state judge must have understood as the factual basis of the prior plea,’ or what the jury in a prior trial must have accepted as the theory of the crime. . . . Hence our insistence on the categorical approach.”
  2. Example from Paul Clement: Nothing in the Act even hints that these permissive procedures affirmatively preclude judicial review of challenges that are independent of cease-and-desist orders or strip district courts of expressly granted jurisdiction under §1331 or the ability to enjoin ongoing constitutional injuries. That is not terribly surprising; the FTC Act presupposes a constitutionally structured agency, and hence focuses only on challenges to the final actions produced by that agency, not challenges to the agency’s power to act in the first place.”
  3. Example from Lisa Blatt: “Museums and collectors do not create single-subject shrines to Prince. They collect Warhols as exemplars of Pop Art, and Goldsmiths as exemplars of fine-art photography—hence, the Second Circuit thought these uses could fare differently from magazine licensing.”

In brief

  1. Example from Justice Kagan: “The appropriate scope of review enforces the statute’s requirements as just described—in brief, that the EEOC afford the employer a chance to discuss and rectify a specified discriminatory practice—but goes no further.”
  2. Example from Justice Jackson: This result makes eminent sense given the source-identifying function of a trademark.1 In brief, once the marks on its bags are serving their core source-identifying function in commerce in the United States, this German company is doing—domestically—exactly what Congress sought to proscribe.”
  3. Example from Justice Breyer: “Read this way, the FAA provides one set of complementary mechanisms through which a federal court might facilitate a single arbitration—but only when the underlying substantive controversy is one that, jurisdictionally speaking, could be brought in a federal court had the parties not agreed to arbitrate. There is no language in any of the sections that states, or suggests, that we cannot interpret the Act in this way. In brief, the text does not prevent us from reading the statute in a way that better reflects the statute’s structure and better fulfills the statute’s basic purposes.”

In conclusion

  1. Example from Justice Kennedy: “That understanding informs our determination whether there is a consensus that instructs how to decide the specific issue presented here. And, in conclusion, this Court must express its own independent determination reached in light of the instruction found in those sources and authorities.”
  2. Example from Justice Sotomayor: “We further held that the blood test at issue was a reasonable way to recover the evidence because it was highly effective, ‘involve[d] virtually no risk, trauma, or pain,’ and was conducted in a reasonable fashion ‘by a physician in a hospital environment according to accepted medical practices.’ And in conclusion, we noted that our judgment that there had been no Fourth Amendment violation was strictly based ‘on the facts of the present record.’”
  3. Example from Justice Thomas: “The court further held that, even if Landrigan intended to forgo the presentation of all mitigation evidence, such a ‘last-minute decision cannot excuse his counsel’s failure to conduct an adequate investigation prior to the sentencing.’ . . . In conclusion, the court found ‘a reasonable probability that, if Landrigan’s allegations are true, the sentencing judge would have reached a different conclusion.’”

In short

  1. Example from Chief Justice Roberts: “Only in the number six position did a white prospective juror appear, and she had informed the court during voir dire that she could not ‘say positively’ that she could impose the death penalty even if the evidence warranted it. . . . In short, contrary to the prosecution’s submissions, the State’s resolve to strike Garrett was never in doubt.”
  2. Example from Justice Kagan: “It does not define a federal court’s jurisdiction over tort claims generally, address its authority to hear untimely suits, or in any way cabin its usual equitable powers. Section 2401(b), in short, ‘reads like an ordinary, run-of-the-mill statute of limitations,’ spelling out a litigant’s filing obligations without restricting a court’s authority.”
  3. Example from Paul Clement: “Even the agency itself must go to district court to get injunctive relief. In short, a straightforward reading of the statutory text renders it “fairly discernible,” . . . , that the FTC Act does not channel into its administrative-review procedures the kinds of structural constitutional challenges at issue here.”

In sum

  1. Example from Justice Scalia: “The biased supervisor and the ultimate decisionmaker, however, acted as agents of the entity that the plaintiff seeks to hold liable; each of them possessed supervisory authority delegated by their employer and exercised it in the interest of their employer. In sum, we do not see how ‘fidelity to the statutory text,’ . . . , requires the adoption of an independent-­investigation defense that appears nowhere in the text.”
  2. Example from Chief Justice Roberts: “When the Bank chose to deal with the Longs, it effectively consented to substantive regulation by the Tribe: An antidiscrimination tort claim was just another way of regulating the commercial transactions between the parties. . . . In sum, the Tribe had authority to regulate the business conduct of persons who ‘voluntarily deal with tribal members,’ including, here, a nonmember’s sale of fee land.”
  3. Example from Lisa Blatt:In sum, CERCLA leaves wide swaths of state law untouched. Nothing in CERCLA prevents respondents from bringing their state common-law claims to hold Atlantic Richfield liable for Anaconda’s pollution. Montana law establishes a general duty not to pollute others’ property, which plaintiffs usually pursue through common-law claims such as nuisance, trespass, strict liability, or negligence. . . . CERCLA does not conflict with that duty not to pollute. . . . But CERCLA’s routine savings clauses do not save respondents’ restoration remedy, which conflicts with Atlantic Richfield’s CERCLA obligations and would destroy Congress’s carefully wrought design.”

In summary

  1. Example from Justice Kennedy:In summary, every state legislature to have considered the issue after Atkins—save Virginia’s—and whose law has been interpreted by its courts has taken a position contrary to that of Florida.”
  2. Example from Justice Ginsburg:In summary, the Constitution vests broad power in Congress to protect the right to vote, and in particular to combat racial discrimination in voting.”
  3. Example from Justice Scalia:In summary, the Individual Mandate and Medicaid Expansion offset insurance regulations and taxes, which offset reduced reimbursements to hospitals, which offset increases in federal spending. So, the Act’s major provisions are interdependent.”

In the end  

  1. Example from Justice Scalia: “Not to mention the fact that in an already-pending appeal the court can give the back of its hand to frivolous claims en passant, whereas the certificate process requires the opening and disposition of a separate proceeding. In the end, the dissent tries to evade American Railway by asserting that habeas corpus is unique. . . . There are undoubtedly some differences between writs of habeas corpus and other judgments—most notably, that habeas proceedings traditionally ignored the claim-preclusive effect of earlier adjudications. But the reality that some things about habeas are different does not mean that everything about habeas is different. The dissent must justify why the particular distinction it urges here— abandonment of the usual American Railway rule—is an appropriate one. It cannot.”
  2. Example from Justice Kagan: “But the most important response to this purposive argument echoes what we have said before about the weaknesses of Cyan’s own construction of the except clause. In the end, the uncertainty surrounding Congress’s reasons for drafting that clause does not matter. Nor does the possibility that the risk Congress addressed (whether specific or inchoate) did not exist. Because irrespective of those points, we have no sound basis for giving the except clause a broader reading than its language can bear.”
  3. Example from Justice Kavanaugh: “But again the Court is imposing a restriction nowhere to be found in the text. In the end, the Court has no good answer for why Congress used the term adjacent instead of adjoining when Congress enacted § 1344(g) in 1977.”


  1. Example from Justice Kagan: “Consider if Iowa defined burglary as involving merely an unlawful entry into a ‘premises’—without any further elaboration of the types of premises that exist in the world (e.g., a house, a building, a car, a boat). Then, all agree, ACCA’s elements-focus would apply.”
  2. Example from Neal Katyal: “Mandating such appeals also may decouple a claim from the rest of the consolidated case, loosen the district court’s control over its docket, and subject opposing parties to duplicative and wasteful litigation. . . . Even petitioner, then, must concede that, ‘[i]n appeals from some consolidated cases, . . . concern[s] about piecemeal appeals [are] valid.” . . . But petitioner cannot identify any workable means of separating the many cases in which immediate appeals would be wasteful from the few in which they might be beneficial.”
  3. Example from Lisa Blatt: “Yet again, that analysis applies with even greater, and at least equal, force here. If an inconsistent valid verdict cannot impugn another verdict under Powell, then, ‘a fortiori,’ an inconsistent vacated conviction cannot ‘command a different result’—i.e., a vacated conviction cannot eliminate the preclusive effect of an acquittal.”


  1. Example from Justice Kavanaugh: “Similarly, as Bielski acknowledges, courts have held that the Griggs principle applies to those aspects of the case involved in a certified interlocutory appeal under 28 U. S. C. §1292(b).5 The common practice in §16(a) cases, therefore, is for a district court to stay its proceedings while the interlocutory appeal on arbitrability is ongoing.”
  2. Example from Justice Sotomayor: “The purpose of Campbell’s logo is to advertise soup. Warhol’s canvases do not share that purpose. Rather, the Soup Cans series uses Campbell’s copyrighted work for an artistic commentary on consumerism, a purpose that is orthogonal to advertising soup. The use therefore does not supersede the objects of the advertising logo.”
  3. Example from Justice Barrett: “This is not an apples-to-apples comparison: The first person willfully violated the law once, while the second nonwillfully violated the law 20 times. That the latter might face a higher penalty than the former is therefore beside the point. An actual apples-to-apples comparison shows that willful violators do face a much heavier fine: The maximum penalty for a single willful violation will always be at least 10 times greater than the maximum penalty for a single nonwillful violation.”


  1. Example from Chief Justice Roberts: “We have applied this background principle when construing federal statutes that touched on several areas of traditional state responsibility. . . . Perhaps the clearest example of traditional state authority is the punishment of local criminal activity. . . . Thus, ‘we will not be quick to assume that Congress has meant to effect a significant change in the sensitive relation between federal and state criminal jurisdiction.’”
  2. Example from Lisa Blatt: “Magazines seeking an image of Prince would less likely license Goldsmith’s if hers must compete with similar Warhol depictions. . . . Thus, market harm—the ‘most important’ factor, Harper & Row, 471 U.S. at 566—heavily favored Goldsmith. But ‘Warhol’s original’ physical works did not risk comparable market harm.”
  3. Example from Justice Barrett: “Each listed item is account specific because its contents can vary for each foreign account held. And each failure to report an account thus deprives the Government of the account-specific information that the statute requires.”

To summarize

  1. Example from Justice Thomas:To summarize the requirements of § 2333(d)(2), the phrase ‘aids and abets, by knowingly providing substantial assistance’ points to the elements and factors articulated by Halberstam. Those elements and factors should not be taken as inflexible codes but should be understood in light of the common law and applied as a framework designed to hold defendants liable when they consciously and culpably ‘participate[d] in’ a tortious act in such a way as to help ‘make it succeed.’”
  2. Example from Justice Sotomayor: To summarize, although nothing in the Convention prohibits a district court from considering ameliorative measures, and such consideration often may be appropriate, a district court reasonably may decline to consider ameliorative measures that have not been raised by the parties, are unworkable, draw the court into determinations properly resolved in custodial proceedings, or risk overly prolonging return proceedings.”
  3. Example from Justice Kavanaugh:To summarize the Court’s retroactivity principles: New substantive rules alter ‘the range of conduct or the class of persons that the law punishes.’ . . . Those new substantive rules apply to cases pending in trial courts and on direct review, and they also apply retroactively on federal collateral review. New procedural rules alter ‘only the manner of determining the defendant’s culpability.’ . . . Those new procedural rules apply to cases pending in trial courts and on direct review. But new procedural rules do not apply retroactively on federal collateral review.”