Message of the Day

A Liberal Sees the Light on Lawsuit Abuse

The American people want to save our legal system from exploitation by an elite group of greedy trial lawyers. The Clinton-Gore Administration, however, has openly teamed up with trial lawyers to recklessly sue private parties and force huge settlements that advance the goal of bigger government and line trial lawyer pockets.

Just ask former Clinton-Gore Labor Secretary Robert Reich, who recently wrote that his old bosses are making, “blatant end-runs around the democratic process” in pursuing suits against the tobacco companies and gun manufacturers. Reich warns, “You might approve the outcomes in these two cases, but they establish a precedent for other cases you might find wildly unjust.”

The Clinton-Gore Administration has pursued the trial lawyer agenda just as trial lawyer political giving has exploded. Lawyers were the largest group of contributors to the Clinton-Gore campaign and the largest givers to all federal campaigns last cycle.

Reich further warns that the Administration is using “novel legal theories” that “give the administration extraordinary discretion to decide who’s misleading the public and whose products are defective.” Reich adds, “Worse, no judge will ever scrutinize these theories…. The goal of both efforts is to threaten the industries with the risk of such large penalties that they’ll agree to a deal…..”

The Clinton-Gore Administration has pursued litigation where their legislative agenda failed. The goal: bigger government, more regulation and higher taxes. In the past 18 months alone the Administration has:

Sued Microsoft

Threatened suit against American Airlines

Planned suits against the gun manufacturers and lead paint

Forced a settlement against Intel

Filed suit against tobacco companies

We can give back our legal system to decent, honest Americans with real grievances, but only if Vice President Gore heeds the advice of his former colleague and rejects the trial lawyer agenda.

Source: Robert B. Reich, “Smoking, Guns,” American Prospect, January 17, 2000.