Never let the facts get in the way of a good speech is apparently the notion of Willis brokerage chief executive Joseph J. Plumeri, who has been giving talks citing a bogus letter purportedly written by President Martin Van Buren.

When asked about the use of the letter by Mr. Plumeri, Dan Prince, spokesman for Willis, said there were some doubts about the letter’s authenticity, but Mr. Plumeri felt it was an effective tool to use to help demonstrate resistance to modernization within the insurance industry. Any reference he made to the letter was always preceded by a qualifier questioning the letter’s authenticity, said Mr. Prince.

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