Proposition 46: Attempt To Raise Medical Malpractice Cap Rejected

Voters have soundly defeated an attempt to raise California’s cap on medical malpractice damage awards, after physician and insurance groups poured tens of millions of dollars into the opposition campaign.

Early returns on Tuesday show Proposition 46 trailing, with 68 percent of voters opposed.

The duel matched doctors against trial lawyers in the most expensive campaign in the state this year and produced a barrage of negative ads.

The initiative attracted national attention, in part because it called for making California the first state to impose random drug and alcohol tests on doctors.

But the reason the contest lured more than $60 million in donations was its proposal to lift the cap on damages for pain and suffering caused by doctor negligence to $1.1 million, up from $250,000.

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