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Protect Your Right to Trial By Jury

It is almost certain that the Senate will vote early next week on two so-called medical malpractice “reform” bills, S.22 and S.23, which would restrict the rights of over one and a half million people injured each year by medical malpractice, while further enriching the insurance companies promoting the legislation.

Preserve the civil justice system!

Through seven and a half centuries, trial by jury has been called "courthouse democracy," "the citadel of freedom,", "the lamp of liberty," "the voice of the people," the conscience of the community," and  "the cornerstone of our judicial process". 

Not only is trial by jury an important right guaranteed by our state and federal Constitutions, but it is the method by which our other fundamental rights are protected.

Today, legislation such as restrictions on the right to bring medical malpractice actions and limits on the role of juries in awarding compensation is threatening the most fundamental right in a free society.  The movement to dismantle courthouse democracy must not be allowed to succeed.

Here is what our founding fathers said about the right to trial by jury in civil cases:

"I consider trial by jury as the only anchor ever yet imagined by man, by which a government can be held to the principles of its constitution"  Thomas Jefferson (1788)

"Trial by jury in civil cases is as essential to secure the liberty of the people as any one of the pre-existent rights of nature" James Madison (1789)

Even arch conservatives recognize the fundamental right to trial by jury in civil cases:

U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist (1979):

"The founders of our nation considered the right of trial by jury in civil cases an important bulwark against tyranny and corruption, a safeguard too precious to be left to the whim of the sovereign. Juries represent the layman's common sense and thus keep the administration of law in accord with the wishes and feelings of the community."

I urge you to contact your Senator today and urge them to vote against medical malpractice deform.  Protect the civil justice system.



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