The question is not whether 100 or more plaintiffs answer a roll call in court, but whether the “claims” advanced by 100 or more persons are proposed to be tried jointly. A trial of 10 exemplary plaintiffs, followed by application of issue or claim preclusion to 134 more plaintiffs without another trial, is one in which the claims of 100 or more persons are being tried jointly, and §1332(d) thus brings the suit within federal jurisdiction.
In 2005, the US Department of Justice reported that there had been an almost 80 percent decrease in the number of federal tort trials from 1985 to 2003. According to Federal Tort Trials and Verdicts, 2002-03, the decrease can be attributed to the growing use of alternative dispute resolution and the increased complexity and costs of trial. In addition, DOJ research showed that 98 percent of tort cases were settled without trial. Despite the study's findings, many people perceive lawsuits to be on the rise. In February of 2005, President George W. Bush signed the Class Action Fairness Act, which sends large class action suits to federal courts rather than state courts, commenting that he wanted to "[end] the lawsuit culture in our country."