New laws are limiting the liability of vaccine makers. Eli Lilly is currently lobbying for a law to protect itself from damage lawsuits over the thimerosal in vaccines. See MSNBC story.
Sen. Schumer complained that the vaccine immunity amendment to the homeland security bill (that just passed the House) would never stand on its own. He's right. The same is true of his own amendment to the bankruptcy bill that denies bankruptcy rights to abortion protesters.