Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Yossarian, Having Fun Yet?

Circularian reasoning from a Clinton appointed judge:

Whether the Plaintiffs may bring claims in federal court is not the issue confronting the court today, however. The issue confronting the court is whether temporary injunctive relief is warranted.

A district court may grant a preliminary injunction only if the moving party shows that:

1) it has substantial likelihood of success on the merits;

2) irreparable injury will be suffered unless the injunction issues;

3) the threatened injury to the movant (person bringing the motion) outweighs whatever damage the proposed injunction may cause the opposing party; and

4) if issued, the injunction would not be adverse to the public interest."

It is apparent that Theresa Schiavo will die unless temporary injunctive relief is granted. This circumstance satisfies the requirement of irreparable injury. Moreover, that threatened injury outweighs any harm the proposed injunction would cause.

Notwithstanding these findings, it is essential that Plaintiffs establish a substantial likelihood of success on the merits, which the court finds they have not done.

....Plaintiffs bring Counts IV and V alleging that Theresa Schiavo's right to exercise her religion has been burdened by the state court's order to remove the feeding tube. ... That statute expressly requires, however, that "no government shall impose a substantial burden on the religious exercise of a person."

... Plaintiffs' claims fail because neither Defendant Schiavo nor Defendant Hospice are state actors.

This court appreciates the gravity of the consequences of denying injunctive relief. Even under these difficult and time strained circumstances, however, and notwithstanding Congress' expressed interest in the welfare of Teresa Schiavo, this court is constrained to apply the law to the issues before it.

As Plaintiffs have not established a substantial likelihood of success on the merits, Plaintiffs' Motion for Temporary Restraining Order must be DENIED.

At least he stopped short of saying; "Even if the law doesn't require me to do this, it's enough if you believe it does".

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