Legislative Finale?

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Mississippi House and Senate negotiators sounded like they were ready to give up their work Wednesday afternoon, the fourteenth day of a special session. But they apparently will make one more attempt.

The full House and Senate are due back at the capitol at 10:00 a.m. Thursday. The two chambers swapped proposals for medical malpractice bills Wednesday. Each side rejected the other's ideas.

The House offered a $2 million upper limit on pain-and-suffering awards for medical malpractice cases. Until Wednesday, the House wanted unlimited awards. Senators said they would not go higher than a $1 million cap.

The two chambers also still disagree on the division of financial responsibility when plaintiffs win malpractice cases.

The head of the Mississippi state medical association urged senators to stand firm for a $1 million upper limit on pain-and-suffering awards.

Dr. John Cook of Brandon said insurance companies need the predictability of a definite upper limit on the awards.

Meanwhile, people who say they're victims of chemical companies were at the capitol Wednesday asking legislators not to cap lawsuit awards.