U.S. Senate turns back class-action legislation by 1 vote

(10/23/03) - The U.S. Senate yesterday stopped the anti-consumer class-action legislation from moving forward -- for now. The vote was 59 to 39, only 1 vote short of the 60 required to proceed with the legislation. The legisaltion would have moved large class-action suits to from state federal courts.

Public Citizen, the Washington D.C.-based consumer group declared the vote "a major victory for consumers, environmentalists, workers, civil rights groups and the entire public interest community." Public Citizen reported that all Senate Republicans, with the exception of Richard Shelby (AL), voted AGAINST the public interest. Most Democrats voted the pro-public interest position. Those deserving a special thanks are Sens. Chris Dodd (D-CT) and Mary Landrieu (D-LA), according to Public Citizen's press release.

Locally, Sens. Rick Santorum and Arlen Specter voted in favor of the bill.

For more on the vote, visit Public Citizen's Web site: www.citizen.org