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Rick Santorum, a critic of med mal suits, helped wife get $175,000 from chiropractor

Texas residents who have been following the race for the Republican presidential nomination certainly know the name Rick Santorum. Once considered out of the race, the former senator from Pennsylvania has staged quite a comeback in recent week and now appears to be a contender once again.

One interesting thing about Santorum is that in the past, he has called for limiting medical malpractice lawsuits. But that's not all - in 1999, his wife sued her chiropractor for a cool $500,000 after the chiropractor allegedly injured Karen Santorum's back.

Please do not interpret this as a criticism of Santorum. Rather, see it as a demonstration of the fact that even people who are down on the idea of medical malpractice lawsuits realize their usefulness to society once they or someone they love becomes the victim of doctor negligence or error.

Karen Santorum filed her medical malpractice suit after she suffered a herniated disc, which she blamed on her chiropractor. She was awarded $350,000, but that sum was later reduced to $175,000. She had to have surgery to correct the problem. Santorum testified on his wife's behalf during the trial.

Santorum, who had co-sponsored a bill capping medical malpractice lawsuits at $250,000 for non-economic damages, pointed out that it was his wife and not he who filed the suit and that he "doesn't agree with everything that she does." He also said he has never intended the $250,000 figure to be "set in stone," though he does believe in caps.

Source: ABC News, "Rick Santorum's Medical Malpractice Lawsuit," Jonathan Karl, Feb. 14, 2012

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