We’re not law professors. We don’t typically read opinions with an eye to where they fit (or don’t) in some grand jurisprudential scheme. We’re litigators, so we read opinions with an eye to whether they can help our clients win.
Thus, when Johnson v. American Towers, LLC,___ F.3d ___, 2015 WL 1321535 (4th Cir. March 25, 2015), popped up in one of our automatic searches (due to a stray citation to Riegel v. Medtronic, Inc., 552 U.S. 312 (2008)), we were inclined to pass it by, since preemption under the Federal Communications Act is not exactly something that arises in our sandbox very often. If you have an FCC tort preemption issue, you’ll want to read Johnson for that reason, but our discussion here won’t interest you much.