Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo's Life?

The hearing is over in federal court. The Judge has taken it under advisement. He told everyone to go home for now. He may rule in a few hours.

Meanwhile, former House Judiciary Committee Chief Counsel Julian Epstein was on Larry King tonight. He said Congress didn't really want to save Terri Schiavo's life. He was faxed a draft of the legislation in advance and said he told Congress staffers that the law wouldn't work, but that there were options that could work. He said Congress could easily have assured the reinsertion of the feeding tube by writing an automatic stay into the law -- or by creating new evidentiary rules. Congress' refusal to do so, Julian says, means it knowingly passed a half-hearted law that wouldn't work.

The inference is that Democrats wouldn't go for a bill that would have resulted in the reinsertion of the feeding tube, so this was the compromise. If true, this makes the Republican Congresspersons and Senators demanding she be allowed to live more than just a little disingenuous. They didn't even go on record for the courage of their convictions but passed a cosmetic bill instead.

Jeb Bush says he can't do any more. Where's his brother, President Bush? Back at the ranch, on vacation.

Update: Think Progress has more --particularly on Sen. Bill Frist.

Update: Julian Epstein's comments on Larry King Live, March 24, 2005 [Via Lexis.com]

EPSTEIN: ....On Saturday, when they were drafting the legislation, they shot me over a copy of it, and I told them that it wouldn't change anything in the courts.

Now, the Congress, with all of its bravado, which was supported by the president, could have done a lot more in this statue to have extended this case on. They could have created an automatic stay. They could have changed the evidentiary procedures that the courts on the federal level use to determine what Terri Schiavo's will was. So, it was a case where Congress really didn't have the courage of its own convictions.

KING: So you're saying -- you're saying Congress put on a little show for the parents?

EPSTEIN: Congress did not have the courage of it's own convictions in this case?

KING: Wait a minute, are you saying they could -- they could have done...

EPSTEIN: Absolutely. Absolutely.

KING: She would be back on a...

EPSTEIN: They could have done more.

KING: They could have had her back on a feeding tube?

EPSTEIN: Without question. Congress could have passed a statute and said there should be an automatic stay. And then they could have set up a whole host of new -- either new rights for her or new ways in which you would evaluate the evidentiary standards. And this could have extended the case. Congress did not want to do that. And now, I don't want to suggest this because the polls are going south on both the president and Congressional intervention here, but now you see, interestingly enough, you see Jeb Bush and you see the Republican Congress not proceeding with this thing when they could.

....this is a Republican Congress. The Congress could have given Terri Schiavo more substantive rights if they had wanted to and they could have created a procedure which would have stayed that. That is a fact. And Congress elected not to do it and now Congress is now staying away from this. That is a fact.

...What the Congress did, was they took a very limited -- a very limited approach to get this into the federal courts so that the parents could have -- could have standing. And the legal standard was they had to show a substantial likelihood of success, and they didn't because what the lower courts had found was the desire to decline this...The clear point is Congress could have done more.

KING: I know.

EPSTEIN: They didn't. Congress tonight could do more and they're not.

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    I don't think the explanation is that the bill was a compromise to get Democratic votes. I think rather that the bill was sabotaged to allow Republicans to grandstand in front of the social conservative element, and then allow them to milk it again for more juice after Schiavo dies, blaming her death on the judiciary. Had the bill been more aggressive, they risked having it backfire on them--but it did anyway, according to the polls.

    FleshPresser: The original bill was a general bill that covered anybody in a similar situation. This was rejected in a compromise in favor of the one-person bill.

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#4)
    by Sailor on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 07:08:48 PM EST
    Sadly Stephen, I don't think those goals were mutually exclusive.

    Great blog - and this is what drives ME over the top... if Congress TRULY wanted to get involved in a meaningful way, they would have crafted a law that covered more than a single individual. But they didn't.. did they? my blog .

    In one word, No!

    You gotta choice. Either it was intentionally an inadequate bill (something that assumes intelligence in congress) or it was unintentially inadequate. They didn't think through that in MDFla it would go to the wheel to select a judge. And they didn't write a piece of legislation that could accomplish anything. My vote: they're jerks. But you know that already.

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#7)
    by Sailor on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 07:34:41 PM EST
    Does anybody have any idea about how the senate can pass a vote with only 3 senators present? It seems to violate Art 1 Section 5 "Each House shall be the Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members, and a Majority of each shall constitute a Quorum to do Business"

    I would actually have turned my TV on to hear Julian Epstein. I haven't seen him since before the 2000 election -- he's one of the only people on TV that I've heard express a Liberal viewpoint in a no-nonsense manner. More eloquent than Joe Trippi, better measured intonation than Peter Jennings, and virtually impervious to strawmen and ad hominem. Truly excellent - and I haven't heard him speak in years.

    Disingenuous doesn't begin to cover it. This has all been cynical political theatre. None of this is about "life," it's all about control.

    terri is in the same medically needy program as i am down here in florida we are hoping that the attention that terri is receiving will focus on the medically needy program and our fight to save it thank you

    As a conservative Republican, I am disgusted with my party's leaders in this whole affair. We have been calling for the sactity of marriage and then turn around and interfer in a family tragedy for political reasons. I still hold with most of the Republican agenda but I am very grateful for an independant judiciary to keep the politicians out of it.

    Impotence is the word. Congrats America, a pervert judge can now arbitrarily pronounce a death sentence on anybody.

    "a pervert judge..." or thirty.

    Sailr: It's because Senate rules assume that a quorum is always present unless a Senator in the room calls in question the existence of a quorum, at which point the presiding officer is required by the rules to do a quorum call. So when three senators are all on the same side of an issue, they can get together in the dead of night, read a bill three times in rapid succession, and calls a voice vote. Since they're all on the same side, nobody is going to call for a quorum...and since it's a voice vote we only definitively know the identity of the Presiding Officer who certifies the vote. Just like magic, we have a unanimous vote of the Senate with only 3% of the body in attendance. And don't look for the assumption of a quorum rule to change any time soon. The quorum call is a procedural method for delaying a vote for a while, and the Senate likes to operate without a quorum all the time. Watch C-SPAN sometime and see the empty Senate chamber. Should the Senate require a quorum to do business, they might not have time to be wined and dined on K Street 23 hours per day.

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#15)
    by Linkmeister on Thu Mar 24, 2005 at 11:41:27 PM EST
    Michael Ditto, in this case the Democrats recognized that it would pass even if every one of them could be called back from the far corners of the country, so they agreed to what's called "unanimous consent."

    Wrong. The Schiavo bill was a spectacular success. It was a "proof of concept." Any law, for any reason, can now be ripped up if the extremists running this country disagree with it. It didn't matter what the bill said, or whether it "saved" Schiavo. Next time, they'll rip up a law with more popular support. Or one that no one cares about. Now that they know they can do it, anything goes.

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#18)
    by Andreas on Fri Mar 25, 2005 at 03:18:49 AM EST
    Linkmeister wrote:
    the Democrats recognized that it would pass even if every one of them could be called back from the far corners of the country, so they agreed to what's called "unanimous consent."
    This is not correct.
    Once the compromise bill passed the Senate, it was sent to the House, where the objections of a handful of Democrats forced a vote by the entire House. Again, however, passage was possible only because of the acquiescence of the Democratic leadership. The final vote, which took place just after midnight on Monday morning, was 203-58. Included among those who supported the bill were 47 Democrats, as opposed to 53 Democrats who voted against. Nearly half the Democrats who returned from Easter recess for the session voted in support of the unconstitutional and deeply anti-democratic bill. The Democratic Party whip, Steny Hoyer, made no attempt to rally Democrats against the bill. Instead he told them to ďvote their conscience,Ē an injunction meant to indicate that the Democratic leadership in the House had agreed to allow the bill to pass. The vote in the House was particularly significant since the Democrats could easily have blocked the legislation had they so desired. Because the bill was given a special expedited process, it required a two-thirds majority of those present to pass. If all the Democrats present had voted against the bill, the vote would have been 156-100, and the measure would have failed. Alternatively, if 146 of the 202 House Democrats had returned to vote against the bill, it would have failed even with the support of the remainder of the House.
    Democrats complicit with Christian right, Republicans in Schiavo case By Joseph Kay, 23 March 2005

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#19)
    by john horse on Fri Mar 25, 2005 at 04:16:58 AM EST
    mark, Please explain to me how a person in a permanent vegitative state, who has suffered "massive brain damage ... and ongoing neurological degeneration interim" and whose "higher brain centers have been destroyed and have been replaced by fluid" can "wonder what is happening to her"? The question that TL raises is whether the Republicans are playing politics with this. Rather than defending the Republicans, you instead use the same tactic that my 11 year old son uses, that is, make accusations against others that have nothing to do with the issue at hand. Kos has this post from Hardblogger:
    "If Congress meant to give the federal courts the power to let her die..." says the Schindler's filing, then passing the law "would be little more than a cruel hoax." Read it again... The Schindlers argue: "If Congress meant to give the federal courts the power..." The fact is, that's exactly what Congress did.

    You libs must be absolutely giddy [over TS's dying]. What would make me absolutely giddy is for her to sit up, rub her eyes, have the tubes removed, take a shower, dress, go out for a cup of coffee, and maybe hit the mall. But unlike you and her other fetishists, I don't think it's a possibility. Some years ago The Sciences ran an article about the organ transplant system in China, which, as you may know, was a big source of hard currency, and used organs from executed prisoners. Among other abuses, prisoners whose intended organ recipients weren't ready were commonly shot in the head at angles that didn't quite kill them--so the organs wouldn't deteriorate before the hospitals were ready to harvest them. That's the state TS is currently "enjoying." That's what you're wishing on her.

    Mark et al... Nobody is happy that Terri Schiavo is dying. Many people, in fact a majority of people, believe that she would not have wanted to linger in her present condition, that her husband loves her enough to fight this very painful battle and wants to abide by her wishes and that the courts have given her parents every opportunity to prove otherwise and they haven't even come close. Why do you believe that any of that is not true? Because her husband, a young man, went on to have children with someone else after realizing that Terri was not coming home? Would you deny any young man the right to have a family? Would you want that for your own son? Do you question the judgement of so many reputable doctors, so many reputable jurists because tabloid TV and the far right have decided that a smear campaign against the husband makes a better story? Face it...when you look at the video of that poor woman reflexively blinking at her mother, blank expression on her face, body stiff and contorted do you think it is likely that when she was young, healthy and beautiful she would have said she would want to linger in that condition? Or is it more likely she would have told her husband she would want to be set free from that horror? As many courts as this society has to offer agree with the latter position. Again, nobody is happy about her death. But as everything else has been taken from her at least allow her the final dignity of going on her terms and not her parents' terms and not the politicians' terms.

    Gee Disingenuous Republican Senators and COngressman? Imagine the odds against that? Next you'll tell me the world is round! Shocking! Thanks for the good info.

    How can the husband love her if he is in a common-law marriage with 2 kids with another woman? Why has he not been arrested for "bigamy"? (slightly curious about that one)

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#24)
    by nolo on Fri Mar 25, 2005 at 06:39:35 AM EST
    Yo, Joe-- Florida doesn't recognize common law marriage. But thanks for playing.

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#25)
    by Pete Guither on Fri Mar 25, 2005 at 06:46:24 AM EST
    Joe, I don't know Michael's situation personally, but I do know that people often re-marry after their spouse has died. That doesn't mean they stop loving their first spouse. Terri's been dead for 15 years now. Imagine the hell if the funeral director held up the body of your loved one for 15 years before you could have the closure of a funeral ceremony.

    Carnky - From the post: "The inference is that Democrats wouldn't go for a bill that would have resulted in the reinsertion of the feeding tube.." The bill simply called for a new complete review of the case by the Federal judicary. If the judge had followed the law, he would have had the tube reinserted, and had a trial. He did not follow the law. He ignored it, saying in essence that everything that had went on before was correct. Which, of course, was not the question. Now that is disingenuous. So much for law, rule of, three branches of govenment, equality of, and hello rule by fiat. Deanna - And many people believe that new evidence demanded a new trial. Since the Left opposed the new trial, and opposed any further action by courts to delay her death, then the Left believed that she be killed by starvation at the behest of her husband, who many find has extrememly questionable motives. If some people are uncomfortable with those facts they should understand what they have done. They have approved of the killing of someone based on information that is in hot dispute. So there is no need to provide excuses like, "Nobody is happy..." Sometimes things do speak for themselves. What I don't understand is the Left's motives, outside of a grim determination to oppose everything that Bush is involved with. A rational government will be very hard to maintain in such an atmosphere. A constitutional republic's government requires that after an election the defeated party accepts the people's decison and allows life to go on, with only a modicum amount of protest and opposition. Molly - The question is not her medical condition, but whether or not she had a living will that said she should be allowed to die. To state otherwise is disingenuous, and an obvious attempt to justify and excuse your belief that she should be allowed to die. BTW - Mark is somewhat of a pain in the patut with his troll like closing, but he is spot on with his description.

    Peter G - One of the facts in dispute is her medical condition. Imagine the hell that would be raised if the funeral director buried a person who is not dead.

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#28)
    by nolo on Fri Mar 25, 2005 at 07:08:03 AM EST
    PPJ prcticing medicince, law and journalism all without benefit of training, experience or the ability

    Gee Nolo do I get a consolation prize? Okay then answer me this, I canít see myself in a similar situation. If I was taking care of a spouse who was never going to recover, I might have sex. Maybe not. I donít know. But if I loved the person that I was in a new relationship with, I would love them enough to legally end the other one. I am disturbed at those posting at DU that describe starving to death and denying fluids as a rather pleasant way to die. I understand that this issue is complicated. However making fun of people who have different views is not appropriate in this case.

    "I am disturbed at those posting at DU that describe starving to death and denying fluids as a rather pleasant way to die. I understand that this issue is complicated. However making fun of people who have different views is not appropriate in this case." The question in this case is not how she would die --this is the way many people in similar circumstances die and there is no pain or discomfort. The medical profession has testified to that fact. The is whether she has a right to die and the court has established she has made her will know and she does have that right And what about the people supporting her parents who are calling her husband a murderer on broadbast media. And now someone has tried to steal a gun and break into the hospice.

    Joe: "However making fun of people who have different views is not appropriate in this case." There are some genuine moral midgets out there screaming their heads off. Randall "I hate my gay son" Terry is one. Betting Bill Bennett is another. And there isn't mockery nasty enough or sick enough to mock such people properly. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't try.

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#33)
    by Bill on Fri Mar 25, 2005 at 07:42:18 AM EST
    I find it sickening and sad the way these fools are acting. One question: If Terry Shaivo were anything other than a white woman, would we have even heard of her??? Answer: NO....We wouldn't have even heard of her. There would be no story, she probably would have been yanked off of life support or eventually had her benefits cancelled by the shrub brothers. And there would be NO mention of her in any paper, news show or pundit essay ANYWHERE. I find it equally sad that these so call "christians" with their loud praying for the cameras and emotianal outbursts of bible quotes and statements supporting life are the first ones to scream death penalty and God's wrath whenever another human that doesn't look like or worship like they do is in a legal situation or judgement. I wont even mention the "amber alert" phenomena. What do THOSE girls look like?

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#34)
    by nolo on Fri Mar 25, 2005 at 07:42:26 AM EST
    Joe, I don't have an answer to those questions, any more than you do. I think it's very plausible, though, that Michael Schiavo (who is not just Terri Schiavo's husband but is also her court-appointed legal guardian) feels a continuing responsibility to his wife, and that he is trying to fulfill that responsibility. How Michael Schiavo's present companion has incorporated that into the relationship is her business, not ours.

    The bill wasn't "sabotaged" and a stay wouldn't have accomplished anything. The tubes ALREADY HAD BEEN REMOVED by the time the "law" was passed and thus, a stay (like an injunction) could only have maintained the status quo. Senator Levin made certain that the intent of the bill was NOT to invade the judicary -- a patently unconstitutional move (congress can't tell the judiciary how to resolve cases before it.) Senator Dr. Quack assured Levin that the bill did not require the judge to order the tube reinstated; that no substantive changes were being made to the requirements for provisional relief AND, most significantly, that the decision was within the discretion of the judge (as the law provided). Had congress wanted to change the substantive requirements for obtaining provisional relief, it could have done so. However, the entire point of this intervention was to set the stage for the so-called "nuclear" (or as preznit chimpy would say, "nookuler" option, which I hope after this debacle, is dead in the water. What the fringers are crying about is that the judges DID NOT take an activist role. Finally, congressional intent was expressed utterly clearly and unambiguously by congress, with nary a hint that congress "intended" the judge to order the tube removed. The emergency ad hoc legislation only created federal jurisdiction (where none should ever have been created) and provided for a trial "de novo" (i.e., where the federal judge could conduct his/her own review of the facts, evidence, etc. and reach a conclusion unbound by the Florida courts' findings. The Schindlers, however, by their Complaint, put the issue of the Florida court proceedings before the federal court, and therefore, the court had to make a determination. Bottom line: JUSTICE HAS BEEN DONE

    Nolo: I can answer it. I would not be in a relationship (and creating children) while I has my spouse in the hospital. I feel it would be way to "icky".

    Review the Hugh Finn case from Virginia --the exact same issues with the husband's family fighting the wife. And in the end she prevailed --when asked why she continued to fight and not just let her huband's family take control because she knew her husband's wishes and wanted to carry them out. This is not a unique situation --it is a private personal matter turned into a circus by the looney Republican right and its enablers the likes of Randall Terry

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#38)
    by nolo on Fri Mar 25, 2005 at 07:53:19 AM EST
    "Icky?" Well, you might feel that way, and I would respect your personal choices in the matter. But I respect Michael Schiavo's choices in this matter as well.

    After 15 years, I think I'd be pretty horny, Joe. I think I'd have forgotten all about icky by then.

    Load - Nice snarky attack. And inaccurate as usual. My comments re the bill are as reported. You just don't want to acknowledge it. I made no comment re her medical condition, just that it is in dispute. You do understand the meaning of dispute, don't you? Of course the Left doesn't believe in dispute except for themselves.

    Just because they doctor shopped doesn't mean her medical condition is in dispute -- the recent doctors include someone listed on quack watch and a Christian Bioethicist which is an oxymoron her medical condition is not in dispute the parents are merely raising questions that doesn't make it disputed. As usual your are full of crap off the radicial looney right web sites Tell us Jom if you think Mrs. Schavo was too young to make this decision how old do you have to ne

    unsigned post mine and I do know the meaning of dispute but is's clear PPJ does not.

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#43)
    by nolo on Fri Mar 25, 2005 at 08:35:54 AM EST
    If my firm tried to base a medical malpractice claim on the kind of "expert" testimony the Schindlers are presenting, we'd get our asses kicked. Hard. We might even get sanctioned. What we most certainly would not get, however, would be umpteen bazillion bites at the apple.

    nolo - From your source: "The phrase "de novo" means only "without deference to what another tribunal has done". In other words, a court reviewing something de novo doesn't assume that the other court's factual findings are correct, or that its view of the law was correct." From the above a reasonable person would know: a. That the time required would be more than a few hours. b. Because of that the judge would order the feeding tube reinserted. c. If there is new claims/evidence, then the other court's rulings cannot be correct since the total has not been reviewed. d. Since we have a highly public dispute, the only proper way is a jury trial, with all information and evidence considered by a jury of Terri's peers. As to the claim that it was not a Federal matter, that is nonsense. The law issued by Congress made it a Federal matter, because one of the purposes of having a government is protection of its citizens, their rights, properties and persons. BTW - Consider this, one of the duties and rights of the Congress written in the Constitution: "To constitute tribunals inferior to the Supreme Court; This also, to me, means that, except for the SC, the appeals courts are a creation of Congress, and thus the people. The judge has created millons of new citizens who are more aware of the limitations of the courts, and the current inaccurate belief they answer to no one. Consider. If Congress can create an appeals court, congress can also abolish that court. And it would take only a simple majority to do it The judge tried to side step, and has been caught in midstride.

    PPJ, there isn't any dispute going on about Terri Schiavo's condition. The quack doctor that says he can rehabilitate her also is under investigation for billing a family for his services despite the fact that he didn't render any service whatsoever. Another thing is the Left didn't obstruct anything to do with the passage of the bill to save her or the way the judges have ruled on this case. Time and time again the Schindlers had a chance to prove all of these allegations of Terri's supposed "lucidity" and nothing has come of it. I wonder if you realize that people like you are being used by the Conservatives in the Bush administration. They never intended for Terri to be saved, they just wanted to throw some crumbs to the Christians that were used to put the Bush administration back into power. PPJ please show some evidence as to how the "Left" obstructed anything to do with this case. You tend to make a lot of baseless accusations and with this situation the facts are out there for everyone to see. Go gather some of these facts that prove the "Left" wants her dead, which has never been stated by anyone on this site, and maybe you will start to get some credibility among the folks who read the comments. I think you will be in for a rude awakening when you find through your research that you and others with good intentions have been exploited by the supposedly pious men and women you helped put in power. You and the Christian right have been used for political gain and it wasn't by the "Left".

    So PPJ how old do you have to be to sign a health directive --- you claim she was too young to make her will known--how old Jim she was over 21

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#48)
    by Pete Guither on Fri Mar 25, 2005 at 08:54:33 AM EST
    PPJ, Are you now saying that the left is the majority in the country? After all, in four separate polls with different wording, close to 60% favored removing Terri's feeding tube. If this is a conspiracy of the left, the left has gotten huge.

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#49)
    by nolo on Fri Mar 25, 2005 at 08:54:58 AM EST
    PPJ, you've just accused practically the entire 11th circuit court of appeals (not to mention the entire U.S. Supreme Court) of having a poorer understanding of the law than you do. And what's more impressive is that you've also accused them of unilaterally putting the entire Federal judicial system in jeopardy by -- get this -- applying an extraordinary statute in a way you don't like. The audacity is amazing. But wasn't it Napoleon who credited his success to audacity alone? I think you know what you're doing. But what you're doing is wrong. It's not about poor Terri Schiavo -- it's an audacious attempt to break the justice system by manufacturing a conflict between the branches of government. And you're playing along. Shame on you.

    Shermnan - From my comments: "Molly - The question is not her medical condition,".... The question is, does she have a living will.... "Peter G - One of the facts in dispute is her medical condition." But that is not the question regarding the living will." The Living Will question is simple. Does she have one, or does she not. However, a person's belief may color their position. As for obstruction.... good grief...just check out the comments... Load - "you claim she was too young to make her will known--how old Jim she was over 21" No, my comments have been that she was young when she made the comments, and young pople often change their mind. As to the validity of the comments, if you are referring to her husband's claim, we have no real proof except his comments. Yes, go back and read the PDF file. DA - Speaking of trying to change... NOTE: I HAVE SPECIFICALLY COMMENTED THAT HER MEDFICAL CONDITION IS IN DISPUTE. BUT I HAVEN'T DISPUTED IT, EXCEPT TO NOTE MISTAKES ARE MADE. BUT THE QUESTION IS: Does she have a Living Will? It is really simple. As I believe in Living Wills, and as I have commented, have a Living Will, if I believed she did, I would say, enforce it. I am not convinced that she does. It is your side who keeps on pointing to her medical condition, apparently to booster their claim that she should be killed.

    had followed the law, he would have had the tube reinserted, and had a trial. No, if he followed the law he would have applied the normal standards for deciding whether a TRO should be issued prior to trial. Which is exactly what he did. The problem for the Schindler's is that they were unable to meet the standard required for a TRO. The Congress did not lower the standard for a TRO. Therefore, even with a new trial, the standard required for the court to issue an order prior to the trial and before the case has been heard and decided remains the same.
    He did not follow the law. He ignored it, saying in essence that everything that had went on before was correct.
    No, he did not say that. He said the specific claims that the Schindler's advanced under the jurisdiction created by the new law did not have the merit required to issue a temporary restraining order. He did not rule that "everything that had went before was correct", nor should he have since that was not the issue before him.

    From the above a reasonable person would know: a. That the time required would be more than a few hours. b. Because of that the judge would order the feeding tube reinserted.
    That doesn't follow. TRO's are not issued merely because a matter will take some time to review and one party would like to have a TRO. There is a legal test that must be met, and it was not.

    Actually, the Schindlers were supportive of Michael's dating other women, until their falling out after the malpractice award. I am amazed at the strength and love of his girlfriend, willing to wait to get married until after he has done what he sees as his duty by his late wife. Also, Terri's parents told the court they would try to keep her alive even if they knew that was not what she would have wanted. Michael did not demand that Terri's feeding tube be removed. He asked the court to appoint a guardian to determine what her wishes would have been. He made that determination even though he exclude the evidence of Terri's statement to Michael about not wanting to be kept alive, as he felt Michael might not be completely impartial. Read the court filings at: University of Miami Ethics Program Schiavo site. You will realize how many lies are being told, and that the journalists just don't care. It took me maybe an hour to read most of it. Less time than they spend in makeup.

    She was married when she made the comments and the standard is not a written living will now PPJ makes up new law again moving the goal posts --she was too young yet she was over 21 and married when she made the remarks. You ar factless and fecklesd and discussion with you is worthless becasue nothing you say is real you were told she was young when she made those comments --just to be clear I'm repeating this twice she was over 21 and already married. Is that too young --are you say married women uder the age of thirty are still the property of their parents --and where did you hear this through your tinfoil hat.

    PPJ, all I asked for was the proof that the "Left" obstructed the passage or execution of the bill passed in congress to save Terri Schiavo. I didn't ask for your OPINION on whether or not she had a living will. I think your earlier assertion that somehow those of us who lean to the left want her dead, have stood in the way of the people who want to keep her feeding tubes inserted, and have shown some modicum of glee at the situation she and her loved ones are in to be an out and out fabrication. Many times before I have been rude and condescending to you,and have felt upset with myself for doing so, but now I can't care less what you think. People on this site give you chance after chance to back up some of the more egregious statements you make and to no avail. You attack the left blindly, with no proof to your accusations, and then act all smug when thoughtful folks rip apart your lame arguements. This sad situation really shouldn't be about political leanings, what political party you are in, or what god you may/may not believe in, the Republican's made it into a more holier than thou contest. It is the exploitation for political reasons that disgust many of us who don't adhere to the Republican party line and unfortunately for the Repub's the majority of America sees it the same way, grandstanding for votes.

    PPJ What about the violations of Terri Schaivo's privacy having her imagein a most vulnareble state spread all over the media --where is the written permission for that -

    DA - I have no intention of defending someone else's diuspute. Are you so dense you fail to understand my point, which I have made repeatedly? The issue is the Living Will, or lack thereof. "The neurologist, William Cheshire of the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville..." Did you miss that? As for examining, I believe he is constrained from moving her to a location where she can be examined. He did observe her for a considerable period of time. Observation, as any medical student will tell you, as an important part of the practice of medicene. But, that still is not the issue. As for CAPS, they are for emphasis in an apparently useless attempt to penetrate the fog that must be surrounding your brain. Gesh. Sherman - Well, you can ask anything. As I noted, just read the comments on TL and other leftward blogs, watch and read the MSM, and review the resounding unreasonable comments of Democratic Congress people before the bill was passed, and now afterward. These things speak for themselves. If you feel offended when the truth is pointed out, well, what can I say? Be offended. And understand. When you say that the feeding tube should be removed, you are calling for her death, because that is the result of the action. BTW - I don't remember any mention of God or religion in the bill they passed. Am I wrong? Min - No, they encouraged him to get on with his life and turn her care over to him. That is entirely different than what you claim. Load - Right to privacy? Unfortunately her husband could have given her that by just turning her care over to her parents. He wouldn't do that. Why? Well, some have speculated that it was because he would have had to turnover the $700,000 awarded to Terri for her benefit. Some have also speculated that he thought she would die shortly, and the money would revert to him. As to his motives, I make no claim, although his actions reflect badly upon him. But, that is what a trial is for. She didn't die and the event took on a life of its own. As for her age, read the afidavitt. nolo - I make no claim of legal expertise, or any variation thereof. I do recognize right and wrong, and what the judge did was wrong. cmdicely - The intent was so clear, only someone looking for a way out could miss it. He was too concerned over process. The system should be about justice.

    Read the Hugh Finn case Mrs. Schiavo's rights are being violated you just don't agree with her choices -- but that doesn't mean she didn't make them No one had the right to release the pictures of her you are a terrorist who does not believe in the rule of law. Just because you don't like the result doesn't mean a fair hearing of these issues hasn't taken place you remain a stone cold idiot as for the money claim debunked over and over

    Above post mine' I did read the filings and court rulings apparently you did not she was over 21 and married when she made her wishes known

    All of the charges against the husband have already been reviewed including abuse charges at the time of the original heart attack everything has been heard you just don't like the outcome so you pretend ignorance of the facts...although now it appears you are permanently stupid and unable to learn new facts

    last post wasted on PPJ yet again you display an uncanny knack for totally ignoring any post that contradicts or calls into question anything you have to say. the msm is doing their damndest to try and spin this whole effed up situation to favor the Republicans. I think you have finally gone of the deep end. when people ask you to back up your assertions with PROOF they are in effect giving you the benefit of the doubt and trying to see your side. but obviously you couldn't care less that some of us are remaining open-minded to hearing what others with differing viewpoints have to say. unfortunately you and those of our society whom share your beliefs are blind to civil and RATIONAL discourse. none of your postings deal with truth but pure supposition. when people call you on it you ignore or obfuscate. at one time i really hated reading any of your postings. now i am just saddened by them. you are a sad, sad, little man, PPJ.

    Bill hit it right on the head earlier...If this had been a black woman fighting for her life, the Repubs and the rest of the conservative right wouldn't have touched this with a ten-foot pole. Remember all the ruckus Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson and the others from the Moral Majority raised when Karla Fay Tucker was coming up for execution in Texas? As much as I'm opposed to the death penalty, I'm still glad that George W. Bush had enough guts to not bow to the pressure. He stuck to his guns, even though I don't approve of his ammo.

    The intent was so clear, only someone looking for a way out could miss it. He was too concerned over process. The system should be about justice.
    I agree that the intent not to change the TRO process was clear, as the bill originally had provisions to change the process which were stripped out to assure its passage. This clearly indicates that the Congress did not intend to change that part of the process, and that had a bill been presented to do so, it may well not have passed. The judge therefore, correctly, applied the existing process based on the newly-created jurisdiction and de novo review requirement. We are a nation of laws. Judges are not invited to rewrite the law to suit their -- or anyone else's -- idea of "justice" when it is opposed to the law. The fact that the right-wingers are now crawling out of the woodwork whining about the lack of judicial activism is, I suppose, in a sense amusing, though mostly its just disgusting and hypocritical, and reveals a complete absence of principles.

    How can anyone commenting on the Schiavo case disregard Terry wanted to die. TERRY SCHIAVO WAS STARVING HERSELF TO DEATH. She had a heart attack from a potassium deficiency caused by her eating disorder. This caused her brain damage. This week as Terry starves to death DON'T BE FOOLED INTO THINKING IT'S THE FIRST TIME FOR THIS WOMAN to STARVE. This is why she's able to last for 2 weeks...she screwed up her metabolism. Anyone with any psychology skills would know that people with eating disorders are OBSESSED with their looks. If Terry could see herself now, elbows bent, mouth wide open, she would die of horror. (Other people might be able to handle this, but NOT TERRY).

    I have no intention of defending someone else's diuspute(sp) Then why bring it up? Did you miss that? As for examining, I believe he is constrained from moving her to a location where she can be examined. He did observe her for a considerable period of time. Observation, as any medical student will tell you, as an important part of the practice of medicene(sp). But, that still is not the issue. He did not perform a neurological exam on her, and past exams, by other neurologists, have not led to the conclusions he made. Several news reports have quoted Ronald Cranford, University of Minnesota, one of the neurologists who made prior diagnoses, as saying "there isn't a reputable, credible neurologist in the world who won't find her in a vegetative state." Link "ABC reports that Cheshire "is also an active member in Christian organizations, including two whose leaders have spoken out against the tube's removal." But, according to you, he is giving us an unbiased report based on his observations and a short bedside visit, and isn't letting his religous views get in the way. Un huh. Here's an excerpt from the NYT on Terris' condition: Dr. Ronald Cranford, a Minnesota neurologist who examined her in 2002 as part of a previous court case, said a CT scan of her brain showed very little but scar tissue and spinal fluid. An electroencephalogram measuring electrical activity in the thinking parts of her brain showed no evidence of continued function, he said. "It's totally flat - nothing," Dr. Cranford said, "and this is very unusual. The vast majority of people in a persistent vegetative state show about 5 percent of normal brain activity."

    Dearest No Name - Because it exists, and is part of the problem that needs resolution by a trial to determine the facts. Melanie - So? There are people who dispute that. Plus, her husband waited seven years to bring the subject up. Kinda strange, eh? BTW - she weighed 115 pounds at the time of the incident. Not exactly skinny. Sherman - I am the one offering comments and thought. All you can do is make off the wall personal attacks. That must mean you are unable to answer. BTW - No one has yet answered why shouldn't we have a de nova as Congress directed. Load - Please try to be accurate in your attacks. I have commented numerous times that I believe in Living Wills, have one myself, as does my Wife and children. My concern over and again is that I don't believe she had one. And without one, the state is killing someone, after only one hearing of fact, and refusing now to hear additional information, and ignoring the clear request of the other two equal branches of government. That's bad politics. That's bad governance. It strains the system and produces nut cases.

    Today it came out that an anti-abortionists put death threats on Judge Greer and Mr. Shiavo. He was plotting to kill them. I consider anti-abortionists to be more violent than Mr. Schiavo. Pulling the plug on a bed-ridden woman can be justified if she consented. There is no justification for shooting a Judge. Their friggin job is to be fair and follow the law. You can tell a guilty man from an innocent man. Example: Scott Peterson acts guilty. He smirked and flirted with other women after he killed Lacy. Who the hell who stand up to the anti-abortionists?! Exactly, no one in G-d's name! That's like a black man going to a KKK meeting. Actually, the membership of these "clubs" is virtually the same. Why would M. Schiavo spend all his money fighting this? It weighs on his conscience. His wife's parents are torturing his wife. M. Schiavo knew Terry wanted to die. Why would M. Schiavo risk being called a murderer? He LOVED HIS DAMN wife that's why. Even if it gets him killed. This man has GUTS. I hope I marry someone who follows my wishes despite how he's labeled by the public. It's eerie to imagine Terry "saved" by the courts and Michael shot by the pro-lifers. Next step for pro-lifers, propose marriage to the brain damaged Terry. Imregnate her. Don't give her the right to an abortion. Call her the reincarnation of Jesus as she passes on Easter weekend. Yea like Jesus was a retard!

    Whoever wrote the above posting RIGHT ON! Let's kill all the judges and thinking and let the brain damaged and nonthinking conservatives rule the planet. They are used to mating...it explains their current nonthinking state.

    Michael Schiavo and George Greer are disgusting excuses for human beings, and anyone with half a brain, half a heart, and five minutes of knowledge of this case outside of the slop the MSM cares to dish out. Let's just look at some facts: 1.) It was 8 years after the onset of Teri's condition that Michael brought up Teri's "wish" to die. This was only after his million dollar lawsuit where he agreed to use the winnings to care for and provide therapy for Teri. 2.) Michael has moved on with his life, having 2 children with his girlfriend of 10 years. Why didn't he just divorce Teri so her parents could take care of her? Could it be just to be able to retain custody of her to be able to kill her? 3.) How can Judge Greer agree to murder this woman based on hearsay testimony and limited medical testimony? Why has Greer been so careful to guard access to Teri and records regarding this case? People need to do more than their partisan knee-jerk reflex when they look at this case. This is a very active, hideous murder by 2 cold-blooded killers. It's pathetic.

    Stop throwing around the word murderers. Roman is a hate monger hating everyone and calling everyone partisan when it is obvious Roman is partisan. He could say the husband is making the wrong decision or trying to end her suffering but murderer that is partisan. $700,000 dollars of the lawsuit settlement money is in a trust for Terry for those who think the husband used it personally. I do think his lawsuit sounds stupid. How can you blame a doctor for not diagnosing bulimia? You have to be unconscious not to know you have bulimia. The doctor is liable for not telling the patient. By the way for you partisans, Terry had her last communion before they pulled the tubes. The husband knew what low grounds the family would sink to using religious fanatics as a militia.

    Re: Did Congress Really Want to Save Terri Schiavo (none / 0) (#73)
    by Patriot on Mon Mar 28, 2005 at 06:51:18 PM EST
    Would anyone call Tom Delay a murderer? Nope. I did not think so, but he pulled the tubes from his relative. This is how to tell a partisan from a patriot. What nerve for Delay to call Michael a murderer just to get some fascist votes!

    I believe that the weak ruling by the congress is the first volley at diminishing the power of the judiciary in our country. After Terry Shiavo has passed, I believe that the right will start working towards measures to limit terms for the federal bench and to initiate mandatory retirement ages for federal judges. They will use the Shiavo case and the emotion that it has generated to begin this process.

    Given the vehemence with which he has been fighting to prolong Terri's life, it is a little surprising to learn that Robert decided to turn off the life-support system for his mother. She was 79 at the time, and had been ill with pneumonia for a week, when her kidneys gave out. "I can remember like yesterday the doctors said she had a good life. I asked, 'If you put her on a ventilator does she have a chance of surviving, of coming out of this thing?'" Robert says. "I was very angry with God because I didn't want to make those decisions." Tom DeLay and Robert Schlinder - methinks speak with forked tongues, politics, money and publicity