Wednesday, March 30, 2005

The cynic in me suspects that

the 11th Circuit is using this latest review as a stalling tactic.

Court to Weigh Schiavo Emergency Motion

By RON WORD, Associated Press Writer

PINELLAS PARK, Fla. - A federal appeals court agreed to consider an emergency bid by Terri Schiavo's parents for a new hearing on whether to reconnect her feeding tube, raising their fading hopes of keeping the severely brain-damaged woman alive.

In its order late Tuesday, the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals didn't say when it would decide whether to grant the hearing. It was not clear what effect reconnecting Terri Schiavo's feeding tube would have on her, as she approached her 13th day without nourishment.

The order issued allowed Bob and Mary Schindler to file the appeal, even though the court had set a March 26 deadline for doing so.

Its one-sentence order said: "The Appellant's emergency motion for leave to file out of time is granted." Twice last week, the court ruled against the Schindlers.

In requesting a new hearing, the Schindlers argued that a federal judge in Tampa should have considered the entire state court record and not whether previous Florida court rulings met legal standards under state law. It also stated that the Atlanta federal appellate court didn't consider whether there was enough "clear and convincing" evidence that Terri Schiavo would have chosen to die in her current condition.

Attorneys for the Schindlers didn't immediately return phone messages Wednesday. George Felos, Michael Schiavo's attorney, declined comment.

Time was running out for Schiavo, however. Bob Schindler described his daughter on Tuesday as "failing."

"She still looks pretty darn good under the circumstances," Schindler said. "You can see the impact of no food and water for 12 days. Her bodily functions are still working. We still have her."

(snip)