There's a cited court case in How To Get Away With Murder season 4, episode 13, called Washington v Davis. See here about the incorrect citation:

In Washington v. Davis, your predecessors decided that even if a law has a discriminatory effect, it is unconstitutional if that was not its intended purpose.

I just realised that Shonda Rhimes has these 2 series...

Series... Scandal HTGAWM
has this lead character Olivia Pope Annalise Keating
who is played by Lead Actor Kerry Washington Viola Davis

Question: Is there perhaps some court case similar to Washington v Davis in which case maybe Washington v Davis was just chosen to match the last names? Or is this really just an insane coincidence (like the tweety bird romulan joke in the French dub of TBBT)?

  • 3
    Are you asking what the probability is that an actress would get the stage last names "Washington" and "Davis" in two series with the same producer, and that those same names exist as parties in a court case?
    – user6726
    Aug 24, 2022 at 16:31
  • I'm asking if there is 'perhaps some court case similar to Washington v Davis '
    – BCLC
    Aug 24, 2022 at 16:36
  • Bound to happen sooner or later in the case of two common surnames.
    – ohwilleke
    Aug 24, 2022 at 19:19

1 Answer 1


There are many cases that announce the same rule as Washington v. Davis, as the same issue has come up in many cases in lower courts both before and after the Supreme Court decided it.

A competent attorney, however, would not cite to those cases in a Supreme Court argument when there was an on-point precedent from the Supreme Court itself.

  • 1
    Thanks bdb484. So it's really just a coincidence then i.e. Washington v. Davis is really the best choice because there was an on-point precedent from the Supreme Court itself, and they're citing those cases in cases in a Supreme Court argument?
    – BCLC
    Aug 24, 2022 at 18:08
  • 2
    I think that's correct.
    – bdb484
    Aug 24, 2022 at 19:23

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