Tuesday, March 22, 2005


Republicans Condemn Court for Following Law

When Tom DeLay and his buddies passed the "Pander to the Right Wing Extremists" law regarding the late Ms. Schiavo, they forgot to change long-established Federal law regarding preliminary injunctions. The standard test for getting such injunctions is to show a "substantial likelihood of success" at trial.

Applying this test to Ms. Schiavo's case, the judge noted Ms. Schiavo's parents had already litigated the matter for many years, and that it was unlikely they would succeed at trial. He therefore properly denied a preliminary injunction but did not throw the case out.

Of course, the matter will soon be moot without an injunction. If the feeding tube is not removed, Ms. Schiavo's body will follow her brain into death. The so-dramatically obtained new trial mandated by the Congressional abuse of federalism principles will be moot.

Several environmental lawsuits seeking preliminary injunctions against construction projects threatening habitat have been "mooted" in this manner. The judge denies the injunction, the developer destroys the habitat in question, and the case is dismissed as moot.

If this were a case filed to stop ANWR drilling, Republicans would cheer the courts for even-handed application of the law. In this case, however, they are condemning "judicial activists" for applying the law in a politically biased manner.

The real problem here is that Republicans are undermining our respect for the judicial system through their policy of "government by men, not laws." They apparently feel democracy is like jobs - the more you export to other countries, the less remains for US citizens...


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