Terri Schiavo’s Brother Responds after Obama Appoints Lawyer Who Helped Kill Terri to High Position

Wed Jan 7, 2009 - 12:15 pm EST

By Kathleen Gilbert

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 7, 2009 ( – In an interview with today, Bobby Schindler, the brother of Terri Shiavo, expressed his disappointment that Barack Obama had appointed the same lawyer who spearheaded the effort to have Terri killed via dehydration to a top position in his administration.

“Sadly, the appointment of Attorney Thomas Perrelli as an associate attorney general is what many of us have feared in regards to a Barack Obama presidency," said Schindler.  "Not only does it appear that Pres-elect Obama has no regard for the value and dignity of human life, but it also appears the same holds true for those he is appointing to be part of his administration.”

The appointment of Perrelli to the Department of Justice comes as little surprise to those familiar with his advisory position on Obama’s transition team, as well as his fundraising efforts. Perrelli helped raise half a million dollars to aid Obama’s presidential campaign last year. 

But Perrelli, the managing partner of Washington’s Jenner & Block law firm, is most well-known for his leading role in the Terri Schiavo case, in which he represented Michael Schiavo as Schiavo fought to remove the feeding tube of his disabled wife against the wishes of her family.  Perrelli worked closely with attorney George Felos, an infamous supporter of legalized euthanasia.

Perrelli was instrumental in helping Schiavo overcome the bill Congress had passed to allow Terri’s case to reach federal courts.  The bill was one that Obama had supported, but, since then, the President-elect has insisted several times that he was mistaken to support the Congressional effort to grant Terri’s family another chance to save her life. 

"It wasn’t something I was comfortable with, but it was not something that I stood on the floor and stopped," said Obama during a debate last year. "And I think that was a mistake, and I think the American people understood that that was a mistake. And as a constitutional law professor, I knew better." 

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