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ITLA President explains that courts are a deterrent to corporate misconduct

A recent Letter to the Editor by Illinois Trial Lawyers Association (ITLA) President appeared in the The State-Journal Register. In the letter, ITLA President Todd A. Smith responded to recent letters to the editor that Travis Akin and Ed Murnane, spokespeople for anti-consumer groups/big insurance front groups, bombarded papers with. Mr. Smith described that Akin and Murnane had bombarded the newspaper with hyperbole and fabrications about the Illinois civil justice system and had quoted bogus “studies” in their recent Letters to the Editor. Akin and Murnane often blame our bad economic times on Illinois personal injury lawsuits and Illinois medical malpractice lawsuits, neglecting to focus on the state of Illinois’ budget crisis, the rocky national economy, and the global recession. Rather, Mr. Smith points out that it seems that Murnane’s and Akin’s problem with Illinois is Illinois citizens’ exercising their right to seek justice.

Murnane and Akin both tout the American Tort Reform Association’s (ATRA) annual “judicial hellhole report,” which we have blogged about before. Each year, ATRA teams up corporate giants such as Philip Morris, Dow Chemical, Exxon, General Electric, Aetna, Geico, State Farm, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, and Nationwide to release this annual “report,” which annually amounts to nothing more than a stunt to routinely attack the civil justice system to attempt to gain immunity for their negligent conduct. As our readers are aware, this “report” has been widely discredited and ridiculed in past years. It has been proven to be biased junk research that only acts to prove that so-called “tort reform” is a mere scheme by corporations to avoid accountability in the courtroom and put the odds against everyday Americans in their pursuit to justice through the court system, such as through product liability lawsuits. The report is further proof that large corporate interests will do anything to weaken Americans’ basic legal protections.

To read more about the ITLA President’s letter to the editor opposing the so-called “tort reform” propaganda, visit The State-Journal Register or the ITLA website.