What: All Issues : Government Checks on Corporate Power : Insurance Industry : S 812. Prescription Drugs/Vote to Restrict Patients' Abilities to Bring Medical Malpractice Lawsuits Against Negligent Doctors. (2002 senate Roll Call 197)
 Who: All Members
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S 812. Prescription Drugs/Vote to Restrict Patients' Abilities to Bring Medical Malpractice Lawsuits Against Negligent Doctors.
senate Roll Call 197     Jul 30, 2002
Progressive Position:
Yea
Progressive Result:
Win

In 2002 the Senate debated providing a prescription drug benefit to seniors to help them pay the soaring costs of medication. However, the bill also provided lawmakers an opportunity to pass other legislation not directly related to prescription drugs. This vote concerned such legislation: an amendment proposed by McConnell (R-KY) that would restrict medical malpractice lawsuits. It would have limited punitive damages in such lawsuits to double compensatory damages. It would also limit attorney's fees and require malpractice suits to be filed within two years of the injury. Progressives saw this amendment as a way to insulate doctors from legitimate lawsuits, and opposed it. Backed by Progressives among others, Reid (D-NV) moved to table (kill) McConnell's amendment. The motion passed, 57-42, and the restrictions on lawsuits were defeated.

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