HURRICANES AND TORT "REFORM" . . . Are the tort reformers in the U.S. House of Representatives using hurricanes to get out their message about tort reform? It sure seems like it. Exhibit #1 is the Katrina Volunteer Protection Act of 2005, which was sponsored by Rep. Sensenbrenner (R-WI) and passed by voice vote in the House two weeks ago. The text of the bill, which grants immunity for volunteers in a way that is duplicative of existing law, states that volunteers are being "hindered in their efforts, or held back from joining the relief effort by the threat of lawsuits."
Is that really true? I doubt it. I personally know two people who drove trucks loaded with food and other items into Mississippi. Neither mentioned that they were fearful of being sued. That's just anecdotal evidence, but I haven't heard anything to the contrary.
Of course, it will take more than evidence to stop the tort reformers in Washington from "staying on message" about tort reform--in fact, not even hell or high water will stop them.