Congratulations to new State Senate president pro tem Kevin de León! De León has committed himself to improving the state’s economy and creating jobs, both of which certainly deserve the attention of state leadership. To create jobs, we must improve the state’s business climate – especially when it comes to the sad state of the California’s civil justice climate.

California is ranked by the American Tort Reform Association for being the#1 Judicial Hellhole in the nation, and CEO Magazine has ranked California for 10 years in a row as being the worst state for business. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Institute for Legal Reform ranked California 47thin the nation in its courts’ “fairness and reasonableness” regarding business lawsuits.

All of these rankings confirm what business owners in California already know: our state’s legal system incentivizes abusive lawsuits, and the lawsuit system mainly serves the interests of lawyers rather than ordinary people. During Lawsuit Abuse Awareness Week last week, small business owners, a local public official, a state legislator, and a doctor all described how California’s poor legal climate hurts our state.

With our state’s unemployment continuing to be much higher than the national average, we need to do more to create jobs and help everyday Californians. One thing that can make a big, immediate difference would be reforming our state’s civil justice system. I look forward to working with Senate President pro tem Kevin de León to help California create jobs, not lawsuits.