Brian Schweitzer (D)
WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline)- Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer will one of the featured speakers at the American Association for Justice's winter convention in Hawaii next month, the trial lawyer group said.
Schweitzer, a Democrat, made national headlines over a speech he gave to AAJ members at their 2008 summer convention in Philadelphia. There, Schweitzer suggested that he influenced the outcome of his state's 2006 U.S. Senate race in favor of fellow Democrat Jon Tester.
In his speech, which wound up on the Internet, Schweitzer said he used his position as governor to "turn some dials" in that election. He claimed to have delayed the release of Butte-Silver Bow County's mid-term election results and talked of tribal police running off Republican poll watchers on reservations.
After news of the speech emerged, Schweitzer said he was only kidding. The Montana attorney general at the time, fellow Democrat Mike McGrath, declined to investigate the matter.
Also speaking at the AAJ convention on Feb. 1 is U.S. Rep. Neil Abercrombie, D-Hawaii, who's running for governor of the Aloha State this year, vying to succeed Republican Gov. Linda Lingle.
AAJ's five-day convention is being held in Maui. The theme: "Networking in Paradise."
Formerly known as the Association of Trial Lawyers of America, the Washington-based American Association for Justice supports efforts to expand civil liability and opposes tort reforms and efforts to streamline state laws, particularly as they relate to personal injury and consumer protection.
From Legal Newsline: Reach staff reporter Chris Rizo at firstname.lastname@example.org.