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WARNING: This site deals only with the corporate corruption of science, and makes no inference about the motives or activities of individuals involved.
    There are many reasons why individuals become embroiled in corporate corruption activities - from political zealotry to over-enthusiastic activism; from gullibility to greed.
    Please read the OVERVIEW carefully, and make up your own mind.



J Gaylord Armstrong
McGinnis Lockridge & Kilgore
Texas Civil Justice League

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Shannon Ratliff    

An Austin Texas lawyer who worked with lobbyist Gaylord Armstrong on many projects for the Tobacco Institute. Both of them were lawyer-lobbyists with the law firm McGinnis, Lockridge & Kilgore of Austin


1983 Jan 26: Texas Democrat Mark White had just beaten Republican Governor Bill Clements. During the election run-up, the Texas business money had all gone to Clements, but in the few weeks left after November to the December 11 cut-off date, the business lobby in Texas had lined up [behind White] to: "retire most of a $3 million debt in a matter of weeks."

    White, as state attorney-general from 1978 had sat "on his hands while (lobbyist) Fondren and his friends (incl. Durward Curlee and Gaylord Armstrong) hammered the Legislature into weakening the state's Consumer Protection Act in 1979."

Business lobbyists in good shape because they stuck with White against considerable odds include Gaylord Armstrong whose law partner Shannon Ratliff was White's treasurer; attorney Mark Hanna, whose wife Debbie, traveled with White's wife, Linda Gale; and especially Pike Powers, although he'' be quitting his law firm for the time being to be White's interim executive assistant.

    Both Shannon Ratliff and Gaylord Armstrong serviced the Tobacco Institute. This document carries the handnote from Roger Monzingo to TI President Sam Chilcote "Sam, I thought you would like to read the attached [newscutting] about Garlord since he will be on the program."

1992 Nov 20: This is a Covington & Burling memo about the future operations of the Texas Civil Justice League (TCJL) who have been set up by the tobacco industry to fight product liability laws (as the industry's contribution towards the tort-reform coaltion).

    They have been consulting the cigarette company's political advisors and have met with the TCJL lobby team. The memo lists the lobby team and their rates of payment:

        • Nub Donaldson (Team Leader) $100,000
        • Jack Roberts (Senate Coordinator) $85,000
        • Rusty Kelly (House Coordinator) $85,000
        • Jack Gullahorn $75,000
        • Kraege Polan $75,000
        • Gibb Lewis $75,000
"The amounts listed reflect only the fee arrangements ; no agreement has been reached concerning lobbying expenses.

    The 1993 TCJL budget includes an item for "legal experts" to cover the costs of Texas lawyers who will assist in any negotiations, briefings of legislators, and other matters. It is expected that Shannon Ratliff will serve as TCJL's chief legal adviser, but Shannon will need assistance. The TCJL estimated legal budget for Texas lawyers is $200,000 .

    By way of comparison, the TCJL products liability lobby team was paid approximately $1,130,000 (retainer & expenses) in 1991. Total 1991 expenditures for Texas legal counsel were approximately $373,250.

    There will be other components to the 1993 TCJL budget to cover such items as public communications and grassroots.

    Specific budget figures for these items have not yet been determined.

    We have tentatively agreed, subject to Policy Committee approval, to support TCJL at a level sufficient to cover these project costs."