Well, a confluence of trial lawyers, insurance companies and conservative republican's marshalled the forces necessary to defeat any further discussion or votes on the Asbestos bill that was being co-sponsored by Senators Arlen Spector and Patrick Leahey.
There are those who feel it can be resurrected on a vote to reconsider, but it's going to take some serious arm twisting at this point, and as there has been over $15 million spent lobbying this issue on both sides, passions run deep on both sides of the issue.
Why it's important to the settlement industry is if passed, the bill would represent a massive opportunity to work with injured clients in an organized fashion to structure and plan their future needs. It will take some serious work to bring it back to life, but my guess is it's dead for this year.
I've also added a link to an excellent editorial from the Wall Street Journal on why it should be defeated. Good explanation of that side of the argument.