Why Nothing Gets Fixed

A Frustrated Lawmaker

The medical malpractice issue is a great one if you're a Democrat siding with the lawyers who sue, or if you're a Republican looking out for the doctors and insurers who get sued. It's not so great if you're trying to find a compromise among these powerful, warring professions. But Senator Dianne Feinstein, a liberal Democrat from California, decided to give it a try, and her experience is a case study in how the politics of malpractice insurance works--or doesn't--in Washington.

Feinstein, 69, would seem well positioned to broker a deal. A member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, she has close...

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