WASHINGTONReuters– Republicans on the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee plan to meet privately on Thursday to gauge support for their chairman’s embattled proposal to create a $140 billion asbestos compensation fund, a key lawmaker said on Wednesday.
Chairman Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania will confer with fellow Republicans on the panel as they seek to determine how to proceed with his proposal that has drawn bipartisan concerns, said Republican Sen. John Cornyn of Texas.

Specter has proposed a $140 billion fund to compensate victims of asbestos, a fire-retardant mineral once widely used for insulation and construction that is linked to a number of illnesses. Specter’s proposal also would cap the liability of companies paying damages.

An interesting issue.