It takes an expensive lawyer…scratch that. It takes a very expensive lawyer, from Sullivan & Cromwell no less, to explain to the Supreme Court that when your client’s CEO said he would “never walk away” from a certain deal, what he really meant was that he would run away from the deal at the drop of a hat.

So what does this mean in terms of the Kabuki at the Supreme Court? It’s hard to say. But there’s a real possibility that the U.S. government, Chrysler, and Fiat are overplaying their hand. The Court, as a rule, does not like being pushed around, especially by the other branches of government.