Former Senator Harry Reid lost his civil case against TheraBand last week. Reid was seriously injured in 2015 while exercising with the band in his bathroom. He later sued the manufacturer claiming the product was unsafe for use by elderly people like himself. But during the trial, attorney Laurin Quiat who represented the company that manufacturers TheraBand, showed clips of Reid telling various stories about his injury, some of which contradicted things he said on the stand during the trial. Quiat argued that Harry Reid seemed to have difficulty telling the truth, which won’t surprise anyone who is familiar with Harry Reid. Let’s count the shifting statements with some help from the Associated Press. First, his reason for not running for office again:
Reid testified last week his injuries were “the main factor” why he decided not to seek a sixth Senate term in 2016. Quiat, however, showed the jury a 2015 video news release in which Reid said his decision not to run had “absolutely nothing to do with my injury.”
Here’s an interview where he says the inijury “wasn’t the decision-maker” with regard to running for office again.
Second, Reid initially claimed the band broke then later claimed it slipped from his hand. And third, the location where the band was attached changed from a hook to a shower door:
He noted that Reid at first said the band broke, not that it slipped his grasp, and that it had been attached to a metal hook in the wall of the bathroom in his suburban Las Vegas home.
On the witness stand, Reid testified he looped a band through a shower door handle, not a hook, and that he spun around and fell face-first against hard-edged bathroom cabinets when it slipped from his grip on New Year’s Day 2015.
I walked through his shifting explanations on the band breaking here a couple of weeks ago.
According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, after playing the clips showing Reid telling various stories that differed from his testimony in the case, Quiat concluded, “The one thing we do know is he struggles with telling the truth.” Well, duh.
But it seems the biggest problem with Reid’s case wasn’t his shifting stories, it was the fact that he couldn’t even prove the band he’d been using that day was manufactured by the people he had sued. That’s because his son threw it away after the accident.
Reid’s family threw out the band after he was hurt. Months later, he and [his wife Landra] Gould lodged a product liability lawsuit against three defendants: Hygenic Intangible Property Holding Co., the Hygenic Corp. and Performance Health LLC.
But jurors decided that the defendants did not manufacture the exercise band involved in Reid’s accident…
Asked whether the verdict may have been different if the band had not been discarded, Wilkes replied, “That’s called speculation. There’s no way I can say.”
I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that even if he’d kept the band, he’d have lost this case. For one thing, the band would not have been broken as he initially claimed in media interviews. That would prove that the band itself hadn’t failed. What failed was Reid’s grip. But the defense had evidence that physical therapists had been working with Reid for months to get him to use a proper stance when using the band. Also, he should never have been exercising in a bathroom full of hard surfaces. There’s a reason gyms have wide spaces and rubberized floors.
Quiat, the attorney for the defendants, really summed up this case when he said, “This case is about taking responsibility for one’s own actions.” It’s unfortunate that after his long career as a leading Democrat, Harry Reid still hasn’t learned that lesson.