The Republicans just can't win on the Schiavo issue.
Government intrusion and political grandstanding by the right mired the young woman's last days in controversy that will haunt the party like Willie Horton haunted Dukakis.
Terri's dad, Robert Schindler, Sr. practically charges Crist with murder, citing theAttorney General "refused to properly execute the duties of his office." (Mr. Schindler, the AG tends to turn a blind eye to any controversial issue running rampant through the State of Florida). He can't claim "tough on crime" in this case and nicey-nice himself out of this one. The man distanced himself on Schiavo in an attempt to remain squeaky-clean while planning his bid for Governor.
Husband Michael Schiavo, founder of TerriPAC, is campaigning for Democrats to help fight a government that overreaches into individual freedoms. Conservative husbands surprised Republicans with the support for Terri's husband. The message sent stated plain and simple. Government. Stay out of our family decisions. Stay out of our business.
Rod Smith, Democratic candidate for Florida's governor, joined a bipartisan coalition to block government intrusion into the Schiavo case. One can bet Schiavo will certainly be an issue in this race, especially if Smith-husband, father, and grandfather-wins the Democratic nomination and is pitted against bachelor Republican nominee Charlie Crist.
And old Jebbie Bush. Terri will haunt that man the rest of his political life.
For that, I wish to thank her.
Charlie Crist Let My Daughter Die
Robert Schindler, Sr.
Jul 31, 2006
As most Americans know, on March 31, 2005, my daughter, Terri Schindler Schiavo died of starvation and thirst after having her feeding tube removed by court order. The sad chain of events that concluded with Terri’s death ignited a media firestorm nationally and internationally. What few saw or heard was the callous inaction of aspiring governor Charlie Crist.
Florida Atty. Gen. Charlie Crist let my daughter die. He had it within his authority to save her life, but he turned a blind eye to her suffering. Even worse, he worked to ensure her death.
Terri lived in a neurologically compromised state for reasons that are still unknown, and my family wanted nothing more than permission to care for Terri for the span of her natural life. We were denied.
My daughter tenaciously fought for her life for more than 13 days after being deprived of the most basic, natural and constant need that we all share—the need for nourishment—food and water. Terri was not on a respirator, nor terminally ill. She was not dying, nor succumbing to a dreadful disease. She was disabled. She was dependent on others, but still very much a life, a woman, and a person.
Over the course of several years, our family, our lawyers, and our friends pleaded for help from local, county, and state police and regulatory agencies with constitutional and statutory authority to investigate the many sworn statements of extreme abuse and neglect suffered by our daughter.
Hoping to save my daughter’s life, our family sought the help of Attorney General Charlie Crist. Not only did Charlie Crist refuse our family lawful access to the assets of his office, but he violated his oath of office by actively cooperated with those in positions of political and judicial authority whom denied us legal access to the police and regulatory systems meant to protect the weak. Multiple sworn agents from responsible police and regulatory agencies who found probable cause to investigate allegations of abuse in Terri's judicial and physical care, were ordered to shut down those probes. This heavy-handedness made us powerless.
Information of direct interest to Attorney General Charlie Crist's office was directly delivered to his personal hands, and he refused to properly execute the duties of his office. And it was with deliberate decision that he failed to attend a scheduled Tallahassee meeting with our family. On another occasion, we approached each other by chance. Upon recognizing me, Charlie Crist abruptly stopped and walked away.
That callous action encapsulates Charlie Crist. He walked away from a man whose daughter’s fate he controlled. At that moment, he turned his back on Terri. And he turned his back on the most fundamental duties of his office.
It is quite clear that Charlie Crist, to this day, has demonstrated no public affection for the cause of life, or Christianity, or any set of core values. He has been posturing to become governor for decades. With each voting audience he has crafted a message based on the expediency of the moment.
To add insult to injury, at a recent banquet, our alleged pro-life candidate for the Governor of Florida said the following about Judge George Greer and other judges involved in the death of my daughter, "You are heroes to all of us, and your defense of the judiciary and what is right is beyond admirable."
Through his actions, Charlie Crist has demonstrated that he has no regard for our most vulnerable citizens, the high duties of public office, or life itself. Charlie Crist’s celebration of the merciless judges who condemned Terri to death speaks to his true character.
Mr. Schindler is the father of Terri Schiavo, who suffered from a neurological injury for 15 years before dying March 31, 2005, from dehydration. Her family valiantly fought to keep her alive after a judge ordered her caretakers to stop providing nutrition or hydration.
Rod Smith uses charm in state race
July 30, 2006
Last year, in one of the most emotional debates of recent Senate history, Smith joined another bipartisan coalition that blocked state intervention in the Terri Schiavo case.
Michael Schiavo Hits the Campaign Trail
Friday July 14, 2006
Michael Schiavo, the husband of the late Terri Schiavo who became the center of a fractious national debate over medical ethics and the right to life last year, is assisting the political campaigns of Democratic candidates for Congress and Governor, RAW STORY has learned.
Schiavo, who made the decision to remove the feeding tube of his wife Terri who was in a persistent vegitative state for 15 years after experiencing major heart failure at the age of 26, went on to found TerriPAC, an organization which according to its website works to "raise and spend funds to educate voters on where their elected officials stood when they had a choice between individual freedom and personal privacy and overreaching government action."
The political action committee is supporting a number of candidates for office, including: Jim Davis for Florida Governor; Kathy Castor for Congress (FL-11); Phyllis Busansky (FL-9); and, Peggy Lamm (CO-7).
A recent visit to Colorado exemplified Schiavo's approach. In a press conference with candidate Angie Paccione, who is contesting Colorado's 4th District, he described delivering a letter to incumbent Republican Marilyn Musgrave that chastised her for rendering "a medical opinion on Terri’s condition, even though you had never met her, and despite your admitted ignorance of medical science and of the law."
Musgrave had said during the Schiavo debate, "When we talk about a permanent vegetative state, I am offended by that....How heartless are we to call somebody like Terri Schiavo a vegetable?"
Republicans on the receiving end of Schiavo's advocacy have reacted strongly. A report in the Rocky Mountain News quoted Colorado GOP Chairman as calling the work of Schiavo and TerriPAC "shameful" and "disgusting.
August 6, 2006
As the primary election nears, religious backers of Gallagher want to put another name before their base: Terri Schiavo.
For eight years, Florida's religious base has had a governor who aired his religious convictions publicly, never more obviously than during the tense standoffs over whether to allow the brain-damaged Schiavo to die.
Religious conservatives like Rep. Dennis Baxley, R-Ocala, feel Crist was noticeably absent from the public stage at a critical period for the "values voter" base as the Schiavo saga played out nationally.
Crist has said he didn't support state intervention in Schiavo's case.
And Schiavo's father, Robert Schindler Sr., has accused Crist of letting his daughter die.
"Things like the Terri Schiavo case, I think they don't matter that much to the people who thought we were wrong. They matter very deeply to the people who thought we were right," says Baxley, who pushed the House bill to block the removal of her feeding tube.