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Friday morning docket: Out with the old, in with the news

whitehouseA new president is in, Gitmo is on the way out, the nation’s Chief Justice earned worldwide infamy, and Congress has answered the challenge made by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg almost two years ago to make it easier to file unequal pay claims. And that’s just scratching the surface of this extraordinary news week!

Here’s what else is happening:

Stem cell trial approved: The Food and Drug Administration cleared the way for the first-ever human trial of a medical treatment derived from embryonic stem cells. (WSJ)

PB&J – but hold the PB: The FDA has also recalled about 31 million pounds of peanut butter and peanut paste due to the salmonella scare. (AP)

Bringing change to the USPTO? The Intellectual Property section of the American Bar Association recently made recommendations to the Obama administration transition team regarding changes to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. (Lawyers USA)

Contraception showdown: Seven states and an advocacy group filed a federal lawsuit last week seeking to invalidate an administrative regulation that denies federal funding to health care facilities that refuse to accommodate employees that object to providing birth control. (Lawyers USA)

Congress considers cabinet: It’s nine down, six to go to fill President Barack Obama’s Cabinet. One of the nominees still waiting: attorney general pick and formidable b-baller Eric Holder. (AP)

Holding down the fort: Speaking of AG, do you know who is holding the job right now? Here’s a hint – he’s one of the only Bush appointees still in the Justice Department building. Meet Mark Filip. (WaPo, DOJ)

Another senate seat occupant revealed: The senate seat formerly occupied by Hillary Clinton will be filled by someone who isn’t named Kennedy or Cuomo. (NYT)

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