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Defending Freedom With Frivolous Lawsuits

At what point will politicians who claim to care about small government, protecting taxpayers and tort reform realize that filing a bunch of frivolous lawsuits isn't helping their case? 

Last week, GOP operative James Harris and Show Me Better Courts filed a frivolous request for a restraining order to aide their signature gathering efforts and garner a little press on campaign finance report filing day. Harris & Co. obtained a temporary restraining order Thursday, but it was dropped Friday because they had no evidence to back up their claims. (Patrick at the Missouri Record echoes Harris' statement that the TRO was dissolved for technical reasons. I regret the error.)

Also last week, FOX2 ran a story about the silly lawsuit filed by Blunt fee agent Buddy Hardin to block a contract awarded in O'Fallon through the state's new fee office bidding system.  A reasonable person might be dissuaded from filing a lawsuit like this if their bid came in third place -- but not Buddy. 

Peter Kinder can't wait to file suit against the new federal health care law.  Never mind that he all but acknowledged that the Florida Attorney General's lawsuit will not succeed -- he's making "a tough sell" and "the odds may be long" he told a Fox radio audience. Kinder wanted to join this doomed suit, but now that he can't, he's raising secret donations to file his own.  In this alternate challenge, Kinder promises "unique legal constitutional claims" (read: written for right-wing consumption, not for success in a court of law).

Then there's Ed Martin, who infamously told a friendly audience last year that he and the Missouri Roundtable for Life were suing the Secretary of State, Attorney General and Auditor to be a "nuisance."  Yes -- he said out loud that he was wasting (more) taxpayer resources so that he could be a "nuisance."  Accordingly, a judge threw out Martin's case with the following statement:

Plaintiffs' arguments of conspiracy and constitutional violations fail as a matter of law, are without merit, and rise to the level of being frivolous.

Did this shame Martin and the Roundtable enough to go home?  Heck no -- they filed an appeal in federal court, wasting even more taxpayer money. 

And all the while, Republicans are banging the drum of tort reform, upset with lawsuits filed people who are hurt in accidents or harmed by medical malpractice. 

It's almost as though these Republican leaders have one set of rules for others, and another set of standards for themselves.



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