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Smile, lawyers, Ellyn changes PIP bill to close deal. Again

Now that Rep. Ronald Reagan's jobs council scotched a PIP deal with the Senate by capping lawyer fees, Rep. Ellyn Bogdanoff is ready to scotch Reagan's scotching and return the bill to much of its original form.

And she could do one better: Codify the right for lawyers to multiply their fees in egregious no-fault auto injury cases, according to one draft of a bill the Fort Lauderdale lawyer is working on to strike all of the changes that Reagan and Rep. Don Brown (both home-insurance agents) made to the benefit of State Farm.

If she succeeds and the bill clears the floor, Sen. Bill Posey said it's a good chance the bill could clear his chamber as well, perhaps in a day. But all bets are off until the votin's done.

Bogdanoff said she understood that the changes made to her bill today was a last-ditch effort by House conservatives to send a message to negotiate with the Senate.

"I did, and they said: 'No.' Well, three strikes and you're out. So let's get this done," she said.

One of the greatest beneficiaries: House Speaker Marco Rubio. He wrote a letter to Gov. Charlie Crist asking him to use his "leadership" to put PIP and property taxes on the agenda. Crist met him halfway with PIP. So if the deal blew up in Rubio's House, he'd have some political explaining to do.

Story here.

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