Supremes get it right, rebuff fundy backed attempt to outlaw physician assisted suicide law
The Supreme Court upheld Oregon's one-of-a-kind physician-assisted suicide law Tuesday, rejecting a Bush administration attempt to punish doctors who help terminally ill patients die.What does it portend that Roberts supported the Bush administration's attempt to outlaw the practice on some technicality? It's encouraging that, at least on this issue, that even if Alito were on the court and voted in favor of a ban, it still would have been upheld.
Justices, on a 6-3 vote, said that a federal drug law does not override the 1997 Oregon law used to end the lives of more than 200 seriously ill people. New Chief Justice John Roberts backed the Bush administration, dissenting for the first time.
The administration improperly tried to use a drug law to punish Oregon doctors who prescribe lethal doses of prescription medicines, the court majority said.
"Congress did not have this far-reaching intent to alter the federal-state balance," Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for himself, retiring Justice Sandra Day O'Connor and Justices John Paul Stevens, David Souter, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Stephen Breyer.