Appeals Court Rejects Bid to Stop Terri Schiavo’s Starvation Death

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 22, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Appeals Court Rejects Bid to Stop Terri Schiavo’s Starvation Death Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
March 22, 2005

Atlanta, GA ( — A federal appeals court has rejected an effort by Terri Schiavo’s parents to stop her painful starvation death, which has now covered parts of six days. A three judge panel voted 2-1 against the injunction request, which was refused Tuesday morning by a federal judge.

An attorney for Bob and Mary Schindler say the couple would be filing an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday.

"The Schindlers will be filing an appropriate appeal to save their daughter’s life," Schindler attorney Rex Sparklin told the Associated Press.

The high court has twice before decided against hearing appeals in the years-long legal battle, but the Schindlers hope they will allow Terri to receive food and water so she doesn’t die while their lawsuit proceeds.

Burke Balch, J.D., director of the department of medical ethics at the National Right to Life Committee, said the ruling is "another in a series of acts of raw judicial power, determined to end the life of Terri Schiavo regardless of the rule of law or the norms of justice."

Balch said that the district court and appeals court rulings fly in the face of emergency legislation Congress approved over the weekend. That measure required a full review of the decisions by Florida courts in the Terri Schiavo legal saga.

“The courts’ rulings refusing to allow Terri to be fed while a full trial is conducted in federal court flout the clear intent of Congress,” Balch said.

The Bush administration, in legal papers filed with the 11th Circuit, agreed with that view of the Congressional legislation.

"Congress intended that the district court take a complete and fresh look at federal constitutional and statutory claims before Theresa Schiavo is allowed to die," the Justice Department wrote in a brief.

Saying the fight to protect Terri’s life is "far from over," Balch called on Florida residents to contact members of the Florida Senate to approve legislation backed by the state House that would protect Terri.

Related news stories:
Former Terri Schiavo Nurse: Terri Interacts, Michael Refused Care

ABC News Poll on Terri Schiavo Case Uses Inaccurate Question

Terri Schiavo Tried to Tell Parents’ Attorney She Wanted to Live

Related web sites:
Terri Schiavo’s parents –