Ten Years After the Tobacco Settlement

By November 22, 2008Briefly Legal

Over at Walter Olson’s Point of Law site, we mark the 10th anniversary of the tobacco master settlement agreement, the agreement between the state attorneys general and the tobacco companies to pay the states billions of dollars, limit advertising and otherwise accede to government control in exchange for limits on litigation. The focus of the week’s worth of posts is the vast transfer of wealth and political power the agreement made to the country’s trial lawyers, with a commensurate arrogation of the legislature’s policymaking authority by the attorneys general.

Olson, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, makes the tobacco settlement a major theme of his book, The Rule of Lawyers.

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