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Around the Web, May 1

Apologies if this seems heavy on the tort reform movement today, but it's what I focus on at the National Association of Manufacturers and there's lots going on...

  • Dan Pero of the American Justice Partnership officially unveils his American Courthouse blog today. (He's had a soft opening for a few weeks, making sure the staff is up to his rigorous demands.) If you're interested in the politics of state judicial selection, this is the place to go.
  • Sherman Joyce of the American Tort Reform Association and Victor Schwartz of Shook, Hardy & Bacon ponder the prospects of Attorney General John Edwards in this Examiner column, "Don't outsource work of U.S. attorney general." Scary stuff: "The only legal barrier standing in the way of a plaintiff's lawyer as AG awarding his friends hefty contingency fee contracts is an executive order issued by President George W. Bush that bans federal departments from hiring outside lawyers on a contingency fee basis. But that order could be nullified by a new president."

  • How about U.S. Attorney General Richard Blumenthal? The Wall Street Journal's Holman Jenkins chatted with Connecticut House Speaker Jim Amann -- who's not seeking re-election -- summarized in the e-mail, "Political Diary." "As to the 2008 presidential race, Mr. Amann says the winner will be... Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal. That's because, if Hillary Clinton wins, Mr. Blumenthal is destined to become her attorney general. If Barack Obama wins, Connecticut Senator Chris Dodd will take a cabinet position and open up a senate seat for Mr. Blumenthal. If John McCain wins, Joe Lieberman will become defense secretary, again opening up a senate seat for Mr. Blumenthal."
  • Hugh Hewitt, the radio talk show host and law professor (Chapman University Law School), in his weekly syndicated column, "On Heparin: A Few, Kind Words For Plaintiffs' Lawyers." Over at Shopfloor.org, we note Hewitt's fine commentary on the move to list the polar bear as an endangered species, a stalking horse for global climate change regulation.

  • Marc Fisher, the Washington Post's very good Metro columnist, took note in his Raw Fisher blog of the judge's dismissal of Raelyn Campbell's $54 million lawsuit against Best Buy: "[Just] because the plaintiff was smart enough to glom onto the enormous worldwide publicity that the District's favorite administrative law judge, Roy Pearson, won in his case last year against his neighborhood dry cleaner does not mean--thank goodness--that her lawsuit was going to be taken seriously by the court."
  • The newly chosen president-elect of the Wisconsin State Bar is Douglas W. Kammer, long active in the Wisconsin Academy of Trial Lawyers. Good profile in the Portage Daily Register, which notes Kammer ran on a single issue: voluntary membership. In other trial lawyer news, the American Association for Justice announced the hiring of new press secretary, former Democratic activist and Obama-for-President staffer, Amaya Smith.



Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy

Manhattan Institute


Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.