included in the Evidentiary Appendix submitted by defendants in support of their motion for summary judgment. NR 47:Tab 8 at 12. This explanation is thus no less a sham than was the Hodson affidavit.9/
It Was Not An Abuse of Discretion To Strike Lafferty’s Unreliable Opinions
“Trial judges enjoy wide latitude and discretion when determining whether to admit expert testimony.” Wintz v. Northrop Corp., 110 F.3d 508, 512 (7th Cir. 1997). “The primary locus of this obligation is Rule 702” of the Federal Rules of Evidence, Daubert v. Merrill Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 509 U.S. 579, 589 (1993), which provides that “[i]f scientific * * * knowledge will assist the trier of fact to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue, a witness qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education, may testify thereto in the form of an opinion or otherwise.” Fed. R. Evid. 702. Faced with a proffer of expert testimony, a district court, under Rule 104(a) of the Federal Rules of Evidence, is required, before allowing the testimony to be admitted, to make “a preliminary assessment of whether the reasoning or methodology underlying the testimony is scientifically valid and of whether that reasoning or methodology properly can be applied to the facts in issue.” Daubert, 509 U.S. at 592-93.10/ Appellate review of a trial court’s decision to exclude expert testimony
9/ It is true that in response to defendants’ motion to strike Hodson’s testimony, which was iled on November 7, 1997, Clark iled a response accusing defendants of selectively omitting the relevant passage fromHodson’sdepositiontestimony. SeeNR69(Nov.19,1997). Butthatcouldhardlyprovideareason for submitting the Hodson affidavit two weeks earlier, on October 24, 1997, in support of Clark’s opposition to the motion for summary judgment. See NR 54. Defendants’ Evidentiary Appendix in support of their motionfor summary judgment, which included the relevant Hodson testimony, was iled on October 16, 1997. NR 47.
10/ At several points in his brief, Clark suggests, incorrectly, that the word “preliminary” in the phrase “preliminary assessment” signi ies a cursory (or less than exacting) inquiry into admissibility on the part of the district court. See AOB 25 (“All that Daubert demands is a ‘preliminary assessment’ of whether the testimonyis scienti ic.”);id. at 29 (trial court need only make a “preliminary” assessment). The inquiry