The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has been at the forefront of tearing down the civil justice system to protect big corporations. One way in which they do so: creating their own media outlets, peddling propaganda that to sensationalize legal news without any disclosure to their readers.
The Chamber uses its newspapers to influence jury pools into believing there is a “litigation crisis” by purposely distributing them at court houses, while rarely representing alternative viewpoints.
This effort began in 2004 with The Madison County Record, targeting Madison County, Illinois. The articles would recount dubious tales of "frivolous lawsuits” and the need for “tort reform,” but the paper never disclosed that it was actually owned by the Chamber’s Institute for Legal Reform.
The Chamber has since created several other news outlets.
The St. Clair Record of Illinois which serves the county directly south of Madison County, and shares the Madison County Record website.
The Chamber’s third paper, The West Virginia Record, was started in November 2005 and touts itself as the state’s first and only legal journal.
Next, they started The Southeast Texas Record in March 2007 which covers the Jefferson and Orange County courts and the Texas legislature.
According to the Chamber it began The Louisiana Record in March 2010 because it is too often ignored by the prevailing media, and its focus is the civil action of the Louisiana court system.
The Chamber most recently began The Pennsylvania Record in May 2011.
The Chamber also has an online only news source, Legal Newsline, which it began in December 2006. Its stated purpose is to cover news involving state attorneys general, state supreme courts, and the U.S. Supreme Court.