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On the weekend before the elections, some politics

The American Association for Justice is recruiting member lawyers to go to Nevada as "election protection volunteers" to support Sen. Harry Reid. The e-mail solicitation was posted at the Fix Pacifica blog, and we've uploaded a copy here. Excerpt:

We've heard the reports about the situation in Nevada. The Angle campaign is already employing voter intimidation techniques aimed at suppressing the Democratic vote. In the state of Nevada, anyone who is a listed as a registered voter can cast their ballot. Try and imagine what the future will hold if we don't have Harry Reid in the Senate. He is a staunch advocate for trial lawyers and the clients they represent, and has fought tirelessly to stop tort reform efforts in the Senate. Don't let the GOP scare people away from the polls. Be an advocate. Volunteer to be a poll watcher today.

• Factcheck.org does a reasonable job reporting on the campaign advertising and politics in the Supreme Court election in Michigan and court retention elections in Illinois and Iowa. However, the piece, "Court Watch: Mudfest 2010," understates the scurrilousness of the attacks against Bob Young, seeking re-election to the court in Michigan. See Detroit Free Press editorial blog post by Stephen Henderson, "Dems cross the line with bigoted Supreme Court ad."

• Two seats are open on the Michigan Supreme Court, which go to the top two finishers. In a new poll, the two Republicans, Young and Mary Beth Kelly, have opened up substantial leads on the two Democrats, Alton Davis and Denise Langford Morris. (Disclosure: Young was appointed to the court by Gov. John Engler, now my boss at the National Association of Manufacturers.)

• In Iowa, Vice President Joe Biden headlined a campaign rally for Rep. Bruce Braley (D-IA), the past president of the Iowa Trial Lawyers Association. He's opposed by Ben Lange, an attorney from Independence.

• The Democratic Senate candidate in Iowa, Roxanne Conlin, is the former president of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America. Her campaign has gained little purchase against Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA).

• News release, The Civil Justice Association of California, "SACRAMENTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--California plaintiffs' lawyers spent another $150,000 this week to help elect Dave Jones as the state's new Insurance Commissioner, bringing their total investment in the race to $644,400, the Civil Justice Association of California reported today."

• The Southeast Texas Record (supported by the U.S. Chamber) reports, "Texas trial lawyers spend $13M in 2010 election cycle": "Texas trial lawyers surpassed their 2008 benchmark for campaign spending, shelling out $13.6 million so far in 2010, with famed Houston hurricane attorney Steve Mostyn providing almost half the cash."

• More on Texas campaign contributions from The Texas Tribune, "Millions Fund Last Month of Texas Campaigns."

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Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy

Manhattan Institute


Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.