Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Asbestos Claim Exemption for Virginia Firm
The Washington Post reports that Delegate William Howell is leading the charge in trying to pass a bill that would shield one Virginia Fortune 500 firm, Crown Cork, from liability for asbestos personal injury claims. Apparently, Howell has lobbied fellow republicans and replaced democrats on the committee that passed the bill. The Post notes that Crown has donated over $100,000 to legislators and has spent equally large amounts on lobbyists trying to get the bill passed. The money and Howell's efforts worked. The bill passed in the full House by just one vote. This shocking example of the political process at work should be a call to action for all of us. I suppose you could say that Virginia is just living up to its reputation as the most business friendly state in the nation. But, I hate to see the rights of the individual sacrificed in that mission, particularly when that individual has asbestos disease such as mesothelioma. Unfortunately, I think things are going to get worse under the new administration, all in the name of job creation. Anyway, do we really want those minimum wage jobs if they have price tags like this bill attached to them?