Torte Reform

The U.S. House of Representatives is expected to vote next week on a "cheeseburger bill." The bill -- the Personal Responsibility in Food Consumption Act (HR 339) -- would bar lawsuits against fast-food outlets accused of causing obesity. Majority Leader Tom DeLay's spokesperson explained: "We have a guns-and-butter strategy...[favoring] narrow bills that highlight Democratic ties to special-interest trial lawyers." The bill is partially in response to a failed lawsuit filed by two New York teenagers against McDonald's -- which, incidentally, just ended "Supersize" options. The tobacco, booze and food industry front group Center for Consumer Freedom has applauded similar state-level measures.