Asserting that “shining a light on corruption” is the way to advance legal reform, the Wall Street Journal’s Kimberly Strassel connects the dots between the indictment of New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver; an asbestos plaintiffs’ firm in Madison County, IL; and, the politically-active national plaintiffs’ bar.
“Mr. Silver is alleged to have pocketed more than $5 million in a set-up in which he directed state funds to the clinic of an asbestos doctor, who in turn provided him with patients who could be turned into jackpot plaintiffs,” writes Strassel. “An equally powerful trial firm in Illinois, the Simmons Law Firm, has shuffled money to the same doctor to obtain its own plaintiffs. Indeed, it’s now common for asbestos firms to get claimants this way.”
Strassel notes the significant political contributions made by the Simmons firm and Silver’s firm, Weitz & Luxenberg, to key politicians at the state and federal level (namely, Sens. Harry Reid and Dick Durbin) who have consistently blocked key legal reform measures, such as the FACT Act in the U.S. Senate.
Read the full story here.