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View Diary: Senate Republicans reach new low in rejecting UN treaty on rights of disabled (225 comments)

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  •  Thank you for writing this. (9+ / 0-)

    Appalling that this fear campaign worked. The likes of John Bolton at work perhaps. Any chance of trying this after Jan. 1? Of course, if Bob Dole in a wheelchair didn't shame these bastards nothing will. If anything,  a yes vote would have been pro-American, since it would support rights established by ADA years ago. It sure as hell would have been a pro-disabled American vote. Maybe these people can't abide the idea of a treaty that aims to help the disabled worldwide. Disgusting and sad. It was tough to see Daniel Inouye observing all this on C-Span today.

    •  The ADA (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      northerntier, DrPlacebo, earicicle

      I was surprised to learn this, but apparently the ADA is one of those things that sets off wingnuts.  I remember reading an article on a (relatively non-political) tech blog a few months ago that touched peripherally on the ADA, and I was amazed at how many people came out of the woodwork full of venom over it.

      Apparently, sleazy (and obviously (D)-leaning) lawyers travel around the country looking for small businesses that are out of compliance, and then either sue them into insolvency or force them to install ridiculously expensive equipment that sits unused.  Betcha didn't know that.

      Anyway, the arguments struck me as having about the same level of anecdotal evidence as Reagan had to prove the existence of all those welfare queens driving around in Cadillacs on the backs of RealAmericans (tm).

      •  Sounds like quite a bustling little endeavor. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        earicicle

        All those lawyers and all those out of compliance businesses, although mostly existing in the fevered brains of those who regularly gin up these stories...
        Anyway, that was a sad vote today.

      •  Although there may be a kernel of truth (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        northerntier, CardCarryingLibrul

        to that, it ignores three crucial facts:

        1) The business in question are violating the law. They always concede that part.

        2) The tactic, to the extent that it exists, was forced on lawyers by a right-wing Supreme Court decision, Buckhannon Board & Care Home v. West Virginia. The Supreme Court held that plaintiffs could not recover attorney's fees unless there was a legally binding change of status. Plaintiffs could no longer get attorney's fees under a "catalyst" theory if the defendant "voluntarily" corrected the problem, which gave businesses a perverse incentive not to correct problems until they got sued. Because people with disabilities couldn't afford to spend money on attorney's fees for each individual business they attempted to enter, some lawyers resorted to filing suits with no notice, and focusing on problems that couldn't be quickly corrected.

        3) The businesses that complain about being sued repeatedly do so because they try to pay off the plaintiff to go away each time they get sued, instead of correcting the problem. They do this because the lawsuits aren't frequent enough to justify spending money on accommodations, and that goes right back to Buckhannon.

        There are two easy ways to eliminate virtually all abusive ADA litigation. One is to overturn Buckhannon, giving businesses an incentive to be proactive in making their premises accessible. The other is to make disability access part of regular building code inspection. Of course, Republicans would never agree to either, because both would look like added regulation!

    •  They also can't abide (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      northerntier, earicicle

      treaties, period. Note the letter that 36 Republicans senators signed this week, expressing categorical opposition to all treaties regardless of content or subject matter.

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