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Bush Calls for Limits on Medical Malpractice Awards

President Bush is calling on U.S. lawmakers to pass legislation that will limit jury awards in medical malpractice lawsuits.

During a speech in Illinois Wednesday, Mr. Bush promoted legislation that would limit damages awarded for pain and suffering to $250,000. The president says the bill is necessary to put a stop to lawsuits he calls "frivolous."

The president says excessive jury awards from malpractice lawsuits are forcing doctors out of medicine, because they cannot afford the rising costs of malpractice insurance premiums.

But critics say Mr. Bush's bill favors big insurance companies and drug makers, and does nothing about the rising costs of prescription drugs and insurance premiums.

Mr. Bush made the issue one of the central themes during his re-election campaign.

Some information for this report provided by Reuters and AP.