Skip to comments.WHO IS FRED BARON? (Hint: Friend of Jr. Senator from NC!)
Posted on 09/25/2002 5:37:30 PM PDT by PhiKapMom
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WHO IS FRED BARON?
Personal Injury Trial Lawyer Fred Baron Thinks He Runs The Democrat Senate. Not Surprising, Considering His Millions In Democrat Contributions And His Cozy Relationship With Fellow Personal Injury Trial Lawyer Senator John Edwards.
BARON BOASTS THAT TRIAL LAWYERS RUN THE U.S. SENATE: Lastly, there is another reason [a legislative solution to the asbestos litigation crisis] wont happen. I picked up my Wall Street Journal last night . . . and what did I learn? The plaintiffs bar is all but running the Senate. Now, I really, strongly disagree with that, particularly the words all but.
(Fred Baron, Mealeys Asbestos Bankruptcy Conference, June 3, 2002)
WATCH THE VIDEO:
FRED BARON: ONE OF THE DEMOCRATS DEEPEST POCKETS
Millionaire Personal Injury Trial Lawyer. Fred Baron is a founding partner of Baron & Budd, P.C., an 80+ lawyer plaintiffs firm that exclusively represents victims of exposure to asbestos and other toxic substances. Baron has made a fortune as a trial attorney and was named in Forbes Magazines list of the 40 highest-paid American lawyers. Baron was the 2000-01 President of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America and a Democratic National Committee Trustee.
(Killer Lawyers, Forbes, May 14, 2001; Baron And Budd Website, www.baronandbud.com )
Baron Is One Of The Democrats Deepest Pockets. Fred Baron and his wife, Lisa A. (Blue) Baron, have donated over $700,000 to Democratic party committees and candidates since January 1, 1991. Political contributions from Baron and his law firm affiliates since 1991 total close to $2.5 million. At one time, Baron was even in contention to have a wing of the Democratic National Committee headquarters named in his honor.
(Federal Election Commission Website, www.fec.gov ; Amy Keller, Soft Sell, Roll Call, March 18, 2002)
Democrat Members Of The Senate Judiciary Committee Are Some Of Barons Favorite Cash Targets. The man knows what hes bought. According to campaign-finance records, 16 of Judiciarys 19 current Members have received trial lawyer money over the past five years -- in excess of $2.5 million. Democrat John Edwards, a former trial lawyer, has collected nearly $1 million. Total political contributions from Mr. Baron, his wife and members of his law firm over that period to Judiciary Members total $103,000.
(Editorial, The Baron And His Fiefdom, Wall Street Journal, September 25, 2002)
The Extent Of Political Contributions To Democrats From Barons Fellow Trial Lawyers Is Staggering. Trial lawyers have contributed over $12.5 million to Democratic Senators and their affiliated committees since 1991. Since 1991, trial attorneys have also given over $43 million to Democratic party committees.
(Federal Election Commission Website, www.fec.gov )
SENATOR EDWARDS HAS BEEN ONE OF THE TRIAL LAWYERS CHIEF CONTRIBUTION TARGETS
More Than 4 Of Every 5 Dollars Raised By Edwards For His Hard Money PAC, New American Optimists, Have Come From Personal Injury Trial Lawyers. Edwards days in the courtroom are behind him, but he is relying heavily on colleagues from around the country as he preps for a 2004 presidential bid. More than $4 of every $5 raised by Edwards political action committee, New American Optimists, has come from lawyers or their family members.
(John Wagner, Lawyers Fill Edwards Pockets, The [Raleigh] News & Observer, May 1, 2002)
Edwards Soft Money PAC Received More Than 90% Of Its Contributions In The First Quarter Of 2002 From Personal Injury Trial Lawyers. Of the $461,000 raised in the April 24, 2002 statement, $426,000 of it, over 90% was contributions from trial lawyer friends of Edwards.
(Internal Revenue Service Website, www.irs.gov)
Edwards Soft Money PAC Received More Than Three-Quarters Of Its Contributions In The Second Quarter Of 2002 From Trial Lawyers. Edwards has been on a fundraising frenzy over the last three months, raising nearly $2 million in soft money -- the type of donation soon to be banned, with three-quarters of it coming from trial lawyers.
(Jim VandeHei, Trial Lawyers Fund Edwards, The Washington Post, September 3, 2002)
The Washington Post Reported That Nearly Every Penny Donated To Edwards Soft Money PAC Since Early 2001 Has Come From Trial Lawyers. Steve Bing, a Hollywood producer and top Democratic donor, sent Edwards a $250,000 check. But nearly every other dollar donated to Edwards soft-money account since early 2001 came from trial lawyers -- $1,859,000 to be precise, according to the Public Citizen analysis.
(Jim VandeHei, Trial Lawyers Fund Edwards, The Washington Post, September 3, 2002)
Since The 1998 Election Cycle, Edwards Senatorial Committee Has Raised At Least $3.9 Million From Lawyers And Lobbyists.
* 1998 Cycle: At least $ 900,280 (50% of all contributions)
* 2000 Cycle: At least $ 1.3 million (50% of all contributions)
* 2002 Cycle: At least $ 1.7 million (50% of all contributions)
(The Center For Responsive Politics Website, www.opensecrets.org , Accessed July 20, 2002)
Edwards Advisers Were Giddy Over Personal Injury Trial Lawyer Money. Edwards advisers get almost giddy when talking about the potential for turning ATLA [American Trial Lawyers Association] contributors into presidential donors next year, when White House fund raising gets under way in earnest.
(John Wagner, Edwards Looks To Lawyers, The [Raleigh] News & Observer, June 28, 2002)
BARON AND SENATOR EDWARDS: TRIAL LAWYER BUDDIES
Personal Injury Trial Lawyer Fred Baron Donated $100,000 To Edwards New American Optimists PAC During The Second Quarter Of 2002.
(New American Optimists PAC, 8872 2nd Quarter Filing, July 18, 2002)
Senator John Edwards Has Been Actively Courting Baron To Play A Lead Role In His Upcoming Presidential Political Fundraising. In a related development, the Edwards camp has been courting Dallas lawyer Fred Baron to play a lead role in fund raising. Baron, a former president of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America, previously helped both President Clinton and former Vice President Al Gore in their respective White House bids. Baron said hes been impressed by Edwards but is also friendly with House Minority Leader Richard Gephardt of Missouri and U.S. Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts, both of whom are also considering presidential runs.
(Joseph Neff and John Wagner, Edwards Coming Home, The [Raleigh] News And Observer, September 19, 2002)
Baron Has Described Senator Edwards As The Whole Package And Has Praised His Ability To Articulate The Democrat Message. Baron said he was willing to help Edwards because he has great skill in talking about issues that Democrats should be promoting. I feel like John articulates the message as well as anyone, Baron said at a gathering in Atlanta of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America, a group he once led. Johns the whole package. Hes a great messenger, and he gets the message.
(John Wagner, Big Donors Fuel Edwards Fund-Raising Machine, The [Raleigh] News And Observer, August 15, 2002)
Baron Credited Edwards For Emboldening Personal Injury Trial Lawyers To Become More Active In Politics. Edwards election set a tone, a loud tone, said Fred Baron, a Dallas trial lawyer and vice president of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America. To see a guy like him come out and say, I am a trial lawyer and proud of it has emboldened a lot of us trial lawyers to get more active in politics.
(David Byrd, Why Trial Lawyers Have A Beef With Bush, National Journal, May 8, 1999)
FRED BARON UNLEASHED
Baron Calls For Jihad. Fred Baron has 10,000 asbestos clients - probably more than any other lawyer in the US - and he has a simple message for those lobbying Washingtons lawmakers to make it harder to bring his cases to court. There will be a jihad, he says. We will fight them with everything weve got.
(Special Report The Asbestos Crisis Growing Chorus Demands Change In Law, Financial Times, September 9, 2002)
Barons Law Firm Is The Subject Of A Racketeering Suit. Several major players in the asbestos plaintiffs bar, including Dallas Baron & Budd, have been sued for allegedly threatening to sabotage pending settlements with a company that pressed for federal legislation aimed at capping recoveries and fees. The racketeering complaint, filed on Jan. 10, 2001, in the Southern District of New York, alleges that principals of Baron & Budd and others threatened a nuclear response if the target of their asbestos claims persisted in supporting the now-stalled Fairness in Asbestos Compensation Act. Fred Baron denied the allegations and calls them garbage. The heart of the claim, however, is a memorandum issued by Barons firm that allegedly instructs clients falsely to claim equal exposure to all products and directs that clients should deny that they ever saw warnings or had any knowledge concerning the harmful effects of asbestos. Baron says the memo, which first surfaced in 1997 after a Baron & Budd lawyer mistakenly turned it over to defense counsel during discovery, is old news.
(Mark Hamblett, Baron & Budd Lawyers Named In Civil RICO Suit, Texas Lawyer, January 22, 2001)
Barons Law Firms Witness Coaching Memorandum Is Smoking Gun In RICO Case. After asbestos claims forced the parent company of GAF Materials Corp., the largest U.S. roofing materials company, into bankruptcy this year, it sued three law firms. The complaint reads like a Sopranos episode, alleging that the trial lawyers threatened to crush any company pushing for asbestos tort reform under an avalanche of new claims. It also alleges that doctors reading X-rays for one law firm received sexual favors from female paralegals and secretaries. . . .But the real smoking gun is a memo that GAF alleges law firm Baron & Budd used to prepare witnesses. The memo details facts that all clients, regardless of their actual experience, should testify to and comments all should avoid. . . . Partner Fred Baron says few people were shown the document: A paralegal did a memo she should not have done.
(Pamela Sherrid, Looking For Some Million Dollar Lungs, U.S. News & World Report, December 17, 2001)
Baron Calls Controversial Practice Of Capturing Clients Through Mass Screenings Wonderful. Since asymptomatic cases had become valuable, plaintiffs lawyers began seeking them out. Since the mid-1980s, they have been organizing mass screenings of potential clients, often with the cooperation of labor unions. After being offered a free chest X-ray, a. worker would typically be asked to sign a retainer agreement, promising to be represented by a certain law firm if the X-ray came back positive for asbestos-related disease. There was nothing illegal or unethical in itself about staging mass screenings, and plaintiffs lawyers straight-facedly claimed that they provided a benefit to society. I think its a wonderful thing, says Fred Baron . . . head of Dallas-based Baron & Budd, which now handles about 12,000 asbestos cases.
(Roger Parloff and Ellen Florian, The $200 Billion Miscarriage Of Justice, Fortune Magazine, March 4, 2002)
Now, as one of the biggest sources of money for Democrats nationally and worried about legislation Bush might support if he were elected president trial lawyers can be expected to place huge sums in Democratic coffers in 2000.
And they have money in abundance, thanks to big past judgements against asbestos companies and even bigger settlements with tobacco companies.
According to former Reagan White House official Michael Horowitz, director of the Hudson Institutes Project for Civil Justice Reform, in three states alone Florida, Mississippi and Texas trial lawyers are due to collect $8.2 billion in $500 million annual payouts.
Nationally, Horowitz figures, they could collect at least $20 billion some of which they could use to build their political power.
Edwards is going to milk his big case - the little girl in the swimming pool - for every soccer mom, and, alas, many will fall for it. He'll remind them that it's trial lawyers....for the children.
Nice to see that in post-9/11 America, Baron is sensitive to the victims of terrorism.
The heart of the [RICO] claim, however, is a memorandum issued by Barons firm that allegedly instructs clients falsely to claim equal exposure to all products and directs that clients should deny that they ever saw warnings or had any knowledge concerning the harmful effects of asbestos.
Ah, yes...the "I am too stupid to know the harmful effects of what I do/smoke/eat, and it's your responsibility to keep me from using your product in an irresponsible manner" strategy. These guys make me sick!
To paraphrase the immortal words of Snoopy:
The last time I saw his wife was the night he won the election. He has not been photographed with her since...another indication of just how shallow he is. Although he is frequently photographed with willowy blonds...his wife is an overweight brunette.
What an offensive little person he is.
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