CHARLESTON -– With an important West Virginia legislative session and political campaign season already in progress, a statewide group is inviting neighbors to "meet at the electronic public square in the fight to fix a broken legal system."

West Virginia Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse (WV CALA) has launched a blog at www.wvClosedforBusiness.com.

The 30,000-plus member organization waged a public education program last year to coincide with the state's retreat from its official "open for business" slogan, citing abuse of the courts as a major reason why slogan was inaccurate and inappropriate.

"Numerous national surveys of conditions for job creations in all the states place West Virginia among the worst and our broken lawsuit system is a major reason," said Steve Cohen, WV CALA's executive director. "Now, WV CALA is bringing more information and discussion of the important issue into the modern realm of cyberspace."

Some of the initial entries on the blog, according to WV CALA, include:

* Attorney General Darrell McGraw's questionable hiring practices. Three daily newspapers in the state have editorialized about his naming campaign contributors to file lawsuits on behalf of the state, and those views are shared with visitors to the site.

* A double standard in judicial fairness? Why no calls for Supreme Court Justice Larry Starcher to recuse himself for calling a party in a case before him "stupid" and "a clown." Video of Starcher's remarks is available on the site.

* And remember when former Supreme Court Justice Warren McGraw refused to recuse himself in a case which brough his attorney AG brother before the court? Read what the Charleston Daily Mail had to say.

Cohen predicts the blog, which will be updated regularly, "will provide an additional outlet for citizens frustrated with the lack of action to stop lawsuit abuse in West Virginia."

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