Supreme Court Decision on Terri Schiavo Condemned, Bush Won’t Give Up

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jan 25, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Supreme Court Decision on Terri Schiavo Condemned, Bush Won’t Give Up Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
January 25, 2005

Washington, DC ( — Reaction is pouring in on the Supreme Court’s decision Monday not to hear a case concerning a law passed by the Florida state legislature to save the life of Terri Schiavo.

Terri’s family and pro-life groups condemned the decision while an attorney for Terri’s estranged husband says Michael is closer to removing Terri’s tube for the third and final time.

Governor Jeb Bush’s lead attorney, Ken Conner, the former president of the pro-life Family Research Council, said Bush had no more legal options available to him.

However, Governor Bush says he’s not giving up and will look for any legal opportunity to spare Terri’s life.

"I will do whatever I can do within the powers that have been granted to me by law and by statute. I will do whatever I can. I’m not going to do more than that," Bush said following the decision.

"I really don’t know what options we have available, but I will take whatever options I think there are," Bush added.

Bush indicated he was "disappointed, but not surprised," regarding the high court’s decision not to take the case.

However, Michael’s lead attorney, euthanasia advocate George Felos, said it was, "This is a victory for civil liberties."

Randall Marshall, of the Florida chapter of the ACLU, which helped Felos in the legal case, applauded the high court’s refusal to get involved.

"Although today’s decision is not likely to stop further litigation in the guardianship court, it should end interference by Governor Bush and the legislature in the process," Marhsall said.

Conner said the Supreme Court’s decision does not bode well for other disabled people in similar situations.

"This case really demonstrates in bold relief, the important need to provide a better way to deal with end-of-life issues for vulnerable adults," Connor said. "The thing that is among the biggest regrets that we have in this case is that the governor never really had an opportunity to have his day in court."

Conner said one other option available to help Terri is if the Florida legislature would pass a new bill, applicable to all disabled persons, saying that court’s must decide in favor of lifesaving medical treatment if a patient has not expressed their treatment options in advance, such as through a living will or other advance directive.

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