A ballot initiative that pits lawyers against doctors has set off one of this year's fiercest campaign wars, a costly clash over increasing state limits on malpractice damages and imposing drug testing on physicians.
Proposition 46 would raise the cap on pain-and-suffering awards in malpractice lawsuits and require that hospitals randomly test their doctors for drug and alcohol use. Backers say the measure would rein in negligent doctors; opponents charge that it's a money grab by the lawyers who helped put it on the ballot.
Supporters have raised only a fraction of the money that opponents have collected for their side of the battle. But the "yes" side is hoping that the attention-grabbing issue of drug testing can help surmount the cash disadvantage.
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