The scandal is what is legal for trial lawyers
Mr. Mostyn, who is considered the biggest donor to Democrats in Texas and has contributed heavily to the party nationally, provided the deposition to The Tribune because he said he wanted to shed light on the back-room dealings. (Mr. Mostyn also has been a major donor to The Texas Tribune.)
Poor Steve Mostyn. He wants sympathy. The trial lawyer kingpin has a good racket going. He finds people who bad things have happened to, then he convinces them it must've been someone else's fault. They should pay! He signs 'em up King of Torts style, and sues. He hopes to settle, because then he takes a huge chunk of what could have gone to his victims with little work and little risk.
[UPDATE: Remember when Steve Mostyn donated $25,000 to Todd Hunter a few days after Hunter was appointed as the mediator in a Mostyn case dealing with hurricane/TWIA claims? Read the link for some cozy emails.]
But in this case Mostyn is alleging -- oh the horror! -- that David Dewhurst actually thinks that Steve Mostyn should have to try some of those cases instead of just paying Mostyn whatever he asks for.
Dewhurst acknowledged meeting Oliver to discuss the lawsuits, but he said he was not trying to cut off Mostyn's political donations. He said he wanted to know why Oliver was settling thousands of cases that involved allegations of unfair or shabby claims processing.
David Dewhurst suggested that perhaps the state should try some of the cases where the trial lawyers cut the most corners in their claims. Mostyn would actually have to earn some of his millions.
What a scandal!
But there is a real scandal here:
Mr. Mostyn, who said he has made "north of $100 million" from lawsuits related to hurricane claims, stands to make even more through current litigation.
Mostyn is making hundreds of millions just by signing up victims! Now that's a scandal!
Maybe it's time that Texas caps the amount that trial lawyers can make from a single incident. Every "windfall profit" over $5 million to a single law firm or lawyer for one particular incident is dedicated to fund something like CHIP. This should be something everyone can agree on!
Oh, and there was one hilarious bit in this article:
Charles Silver, a University of Texas at Austin School of Law professor and expert on tort laws, said the private complaints about money going to Democrats underscored a primary motivation behind lawsuit curbs.
"This is just another example of what tort reform has always been about," Mr. Silver said. "It's always been about defunding trial lawyers who are giving money to Democrats. It's just a continuation of the prior endeavor." (The University of Texas at Austin is a corporate sponsor of The Texas Tribune.)
Ah yes, a UT Law professor and "expert on tort laws." Jay Root's description leaves us thinking that Charles Silver is just a neutral third-party.
WRONG. Mr. Silver profits from the trial lawyers. From his bio:
Professor Silver often consults with attorneys and serves as an expert witness. He has strong ties with all segments of the litigating bar. On the plaintiffs' side, he submitted an expert report on attorneys' fees in the massive Enron settlement and served as professional responsibility advisor to the private attorneys who handled the State of Texas’ lawsuit against the tobacco industry.
Now, I don't know Silver's hourly rate, but hourly rates for expert witnesses often run between $500 and $1000 an hour. But I'm sure that has absolutely nothing to do with why Charles Silver loves trial lawyers. /sarcasm
But wait, there's more!
Remember when trial lawyer John Edwards ran for president? Charles Silver donated to him (he's also donated to a few Democrats in Texas). John Edwards epitomized the sleazy politician. Everything about him was fake.
That's who Charles Silver thought should be president.
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