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Win For Bush, Win For Reform: Tort Reform Passes Senate.

WILLisms.com has commented in recent weeks on the momentum of tort reform, which likely would have been dead-on-arrival had John and John, Kerry and Edwards, been elected.

President Bush campaigned hard for tort reform, noting that America has become too litigious, and this sue-happy climate is not a good environment for economic growth. Frivolous lawsuits are a proven drag on the economy; cleaning up the system is necessary, among other reasons, to prevent jobs from going overseas unnecessarily to countries where indiscriminate, "keep-pulling-the-lever-until-you-hit-the-jackpot" lawsuits are not as common. Beholden to the trial-lawyer lobby for campaign cash, Democrats generally oppose tort reform.

Today the Senate passed tort reform, 72-26.

Notable votes against tort reform, based on WILLisms.com's list of promising 2006 Senate races for the GOP:

1. Democrat Debbie Stabenow, of Michigan.
2. Democrat Mark Dayton, of Minnesota (although Dayton is not going to seek reelection in 2006).
3. Democrat, and former KKK member, Robert Byrd, of West Virginia.
4. Democrat Bill Nelson, of Florida.

Overall, though, 18 Democrats plus Jim Jeffords joined with 53 Republicans (the two other Republicans were absent) in supporting the measure.

The bill now goes to the House, where it is expected to coast to victory. President Bush will likely sign it into law sometime in late February.

While trial lawyers are likely to find ways around the reform, and this reform is relatively modest and narrow in scope, it is an important step for preventing outrageous lawsuits from drowning the American economy.

Stay tuned, as WILLisms.com will keep you updated on this story as it progresses.

Posted by Will Franklin · 11 February 2005 01:14 PM