Diary

Federal tort reform

To those who habitually cite the 10th Amendment to complain about federal forays into state matters, make up your minds.  You whine about federal intrusions but beg for the more when you ask for federal tort (malpractice) reform.

Unless you live in a federal enclave or territory, tort law is state law and nothing but state law.  And even if you are in federal court because of diversity of citizenship, the federal court uses state tort law.  And if you are in federal court because of a federal question and you join state tort claims, the federal court uses state tort law for the state tort claims.  Federal courts are bound to follow state court decisions.

Demanding federal tort reform is demanding the federal government take over state tort (malpractice) law.  It is demanding that the federal government preempt hundreds of years of state case law.  And it is demanding the federal government take over one-third of the state government.

Given the interpretation of the commerce clause, I do not doubt that federal tort (malpractice) reform would be upheld as a proper exercise of federal power.  Then you can go back to complaining about the federal government ignoring the 10th Amendment.