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Historic Supreme Court Arguments On the Web

For the first time, the U.S. Supreme Court is offering a recording of one of its sessions. And that historic recording became available on the Internet Friday.

Visitors to findlaw.com can hear the first-ever recording. The oral arguments over the ongoing Florida/election debacle will be presented in MP3 audio format. An updated version accompanied by a transcript identifying each speaking Supreme Court justice will be available later in the day.

The MP3 files are additionally offered on InternetNews Radio, a sister site of InternetNews.com. Listeners can click here for a sound byte of history.

The 90-minute session centers on a ruling, challenged by Governor George W. Bush and defended by Vice President Al Gore, that extended the deadline for certifying the election results and that ordered hand-counted votes be included in the final tally. The two presidential contenders are disputing whether hand-counted votes had been properly allowed.

The session began at 10 a.m. Friday. Arguing first was lawyer Theodore Olson, who represents Bush, followed by Harvard University law professor Laurence Tribe, on behalf of Gore.