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Around the Web, April 24

  • The headline says it all (almost). From today's Examiner, "Pelosi betrays her own House for a slew of trial lawyers." It's a tough editorial on the Speaker's preference for the Senate version of CPSC legislation, instead of the more balanced House-passed version. "In the name of reforming the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the Senate version would create bureaucratic red tape galore, while enabling the sort of class-action jackpot justice that enriches plaintiffs lawyers at the expense of consumers and shareholders." The bill also turns state attorneys general loose on a territory ripe for even more politically motivated litigation.
  • Back to the House. Andrew C. McCarthy at The National Review Online reminds us that legislation to enact needed Foreign Surveillance Intelligence Act amendments remains blocked by House leadership over the issue of retroactive legal immunity for telecom companies that complied with lawful federal requests to aid in the monitoring of cross-border communications. The trial lawyers are calling the shots, he argues in "Dems Unserious on Surveillance": But now: "Democrats legal position has become even more untenable, thanks to an unlikely Bush ally: the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, generally regarded as the nation's most liberal. In a significant Fourth Amendment decision on Tuesday, a three-judge panel unanimously held that laptop computers, including the e-mail communications stored in them, may be searched without a warrant if a person attempts to carry them into or out of the United States."
  • The election fraud and conspiracy trial of Geoffrey Fieger and Ven Johnson gets under way today in Detroit. The Detroit Free Press reports the trial is expected to take 5-1/2 weeks. Thank goodness it's not 5-2/3rds weeks.
  • Good piece in Legal Newsline covering blogger Kathleen Seidel's victory over abusive claims from trial lawyer Clifford Shoemaker of Virginia, who sought information about "documents pertaining to the setup, financing, running, research and maintaining." Shoemaker is a vaccine-mercury-autism attorney.



Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy

Manhattan Institute


Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.