Law Schools

Lawmakers Move to Slash Law School $$

A Wisconsin lawmaker fed up with “ambulance chasers” and “frivolous lawsuits” has managed to convince his state’s General Assembly this week to de-fund the University of Wisconsin law school.

“We don’t need more ambulance chasers. We don’t need frivolous lawsuits. And we don’t need attorneys making people’s lives miserable when they go to family court for divorces,” said Rep. Frank Lasee, R-Green Bay is quoted saying in an Associated Press story. Lasee goes on to say that too many lawyers lead to “all those bad results.”

Not surprisingly, the dean of the Madison-based law school balked and noted that a loss of state funding would increase tuition by $5,000 per year and result in program cuts.

AP reports that while the Republican-controlled Assembly passed the budget, sans law school funding, by a 51-44 vote, the Democrat-controlled Senate would need to do the same. And even if they did agree, Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle isn’t likely to support cutting funding to the school, where his late mother served as an administrator. AP quotes Doyle as describing the plan as “a really bizarre thing that came out of nowhere.”

But even the law school’s alumni are supporting Lasee’s move to slash funding. Rep. Mark Gundrum, R-New Berlin, and Rep. Sheryl Albers, R-Reedsburg, are reported to have graduated from the law school and voted for the budget.

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