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Radio interview
Alan Keyes on Take a Stand with Adam McManus
March 29, 2005

ADAM MCMANUS, HOST: Jessie Jackson in Pinellas Park, Florida, and he is there at the request of the Schindlers talking about Terri Schiavo. My friends, this is an important day indeed for us to not lose hope to consider continuing to call our congressmen, the Woodside Hospice folks, as well as petition the Lord God Almighty through prayer and fasting and to do what we can to take a stand for life.

We'll talk about what you can do, and we'll talk with Alan Keyes about the authority that Governor Jeb Bush has at his disposal right now to take Terri into his custody. Alan Keyes, my guest at 5:30. Stick around. That's next on Take a Stand.


MCMANUS: We welcome to the airwaves, as promised, Alan Keyes, former Republican presidential candidate, Illinois senatorial candidate, as well as the head of the Declaration Foundation, having just visited with the former chairman of Judicial Watch, Larry Klayman, Tallahassee, Florida, urging Governor Jeb Bush's attorneys to let Jeb Bush know he has the authority right now to take Terri into his custody and to protect her, no matter what this Judge Greer might say.

Alan Keyes, welcome back to the southwestern airwaves.

KEYES: Thank you. I'm glad to be with you. I appreciate the opportunity.

MCMANUS: What kind of response did you receive from Raquel Rodriquez, the General Council for Governor Bush when you were granted that meeting?

KEYES: Well, I didn't actually talk to Raquel. I think Larry Klayman and Bill Greene talked to her. I talked to Bush's deputy chief of staff.

MCMANUS: William Large.

KEYES: And I think in both cases they listened, but were dismissive. My impression was that they didn't really understand or appreciate the nature of the constitutional arguments, and that he's getting very bad and inadequate advice, which I was there to try to help with, even though, as it turned out, he didn't appear to be disposed to listen.

It raises a certain doubt in my mind, because usually if you're really convinced that something is right, you would, at the very least, want to hear the best case that could be made for your position and action. And as far as I could tell, Jeb Bush didn't want to hear it.

But I have made it anyway. I presented it in a long piece that has been distributed it through WorldNetDaily and also around the country. It's been submitted and the arguments have too--[I submitted to] Jeb Bush's folks, among others, a shorter piece that distills the argument particularly as to Jeb Bush's authority, which is quite clear, by the way. There's no equivocation. It's not a matter of interpretation. The Florida constitution is explicit on all the relative points. Explicit about the rights of Terri Schiavo. It says that all natural persons in Florida shall have certain inalienable rights, that among them is the right to enjoy and defend life. So, it's very clear.

Some constitutions, by the way, including the national one, don't justify the right to life, absolutely, specifically. The Florida constitution does, and it makes clear that it's inalienable, meaning to say that you can't give it away, and it can't be transferred to another by law.

That's exactly what Judge Greer has done. He has tried to transfer Terri Schiavo's right to life to Michael Schiavo for its exercise--and that is unconstitutional in Florida on the face of it.

MCMANUS: Now, you write in your column today at, Alan Keyes, these two opening paragraphs:
The Florida state constitution declares unequivocally that in the state of Florida "the supreme executive power shall be vested in a governor...." The word supreme means highest in authority. There can be no executive authority in the state of Florida higher than the governor. No state law can create an executive authority higher than highest in the Florida constitution. Therefore no court order based upon such a law can constitutionally create such an authority.
You summarize by saying:
If the governor tells the local police in Pinellas County to step aside, they must do so, or else be arrested and tried for an assault on the government of the state, which is to say insurrection.
KEYES: That's exactly right. People forget that the governor, when he is in office, is not an individual. He is a branch of government, and he represents the whole executive power that is vested in Florida in the hands of the governor, and it is declared to be supreme.

Some people are trying to say that I'm saying that. I'm not saying that. The Florida constitution says that. And what that means is that nobody can substitute their judgment for his judgment, when it comes the use of executive powers in Florida, according to his oath. And his oath requires that he obeys the constitution of Florida, and the constitution of Florida has said that Terri Schiavo's right to life is inalienable.

MCMANUS: All right. I'm confused, because last Wednesday Governor Bush said he recognizes that there is injustice being done. He recognizes that there is a need for another medical survey of her abilities and capabilities--even cited a neurologist who indicated as such--and yet announced beforehand that he intended on taking her into the custody of the Department of Children and Families of Florida, and three hours later when Judge George Greer says, "No, you will not," Governor Bush thinks he has to abide by what this judge proclaims.

KEYES: There is also a second problem, because, of course, when he took his oath of office, Jeb Bush stepped into the governorship, he's charged with the executive power and he has the responsibility to protect its constitutional integrity. By giving the impression that power of the governor is subordinate to the power of the judge and the county sheriff, he is actually violating the Florida constitution and impairing, damaging, the power that is necessary for the governor to do his job.

Obviously, if you're in a situation where some local law enforcement people feel like they want to do x, y, or z, the Florida constitution makes him the supreme executive authority, so he can keep them in line, so there will be no abuse at any level of executive power except that it is answerable to the governor, and through the governor to the state legislature, which has the power to impeach and try him, if he should engage in abuses.

So, he is actually, right now, I think, clearly in derogation of his responsibilities, on two grounds: he not defending Terri Schiavo's rights; and he is acting in such a way as to undermine, impair, and destroy the integrity of the office that he holds.

And this is a really quite serious problem, especially because he is the President's brother. And that gives the impression, whether it's true or not, that somehow this understanding of executive power is supported, adhered to by the President.

Now image this. Image a situation where a judge decides that some use of American military power is contrary to the Constitution, and says the President cannot use our armed forces to respond to this or that situation or emergency. Who in their right mind believes that the President has to obey the court when it comes to his responsibilities as Commander in Chief?

MCMANUS: Excellent point. Alan Keyes, my guest. If you'd like to call in with a question or comment, phone number is 340-9585. If you want me to e-mail his very powerfully written column, send that the to

Forrest, up next from Selma. Hi, you're on AM 630 KSLR with Adam McManus and Alan Keyes.

FORREST: All right. Dr. Keyes. I just want to point out that mainstream media, they want to play both sides. When Terri is going through this, "she's peaceful. It's euphoric. She's in a state of euphoria." But yet, it's this same media that, when starvation was taking place in Ethiopia, [they said] how we needed to help out; or the oil for food, how we needed to help these children. Isn't that kinda ironic that you see, you know, how the mainstream media tries to play both angles?

KEYES: I think it is. I think it's clearly because some elements of the Left that dominate the media understands that this case has implications for the whole issue of life and the respect for life. I think the see a big advance here. If they can declare that somebody outside the womb who does not have brainwaves, and so forth and so on, is to be treated as if their life doesn't matter, and relative can take their life, and you get some people like Jeb Bush to tolerate this, doesn't that undermine the pro-life position? Because after all, there's some point in the womb that you don't have a brain yet. And that would clearly suggest that you can be disposed of by your mother at her whim, which proves their point.

MCMANUS: And of course, she . . .

KEYES: But they see this as part of that whole culture of death, pro-abortion thing, and they know. That's why the National Organization of Women--you would think that a woman in this position, helpless, disabled, where there's evidence, allegedly, of the possibility of some abuse, why aren't they at least saying that it should be looked into? It's because it conflicts with their culture of death agenda.

MCMANUS: Excellent point. Catherine from Berne. You're on AM 630 KSLR with Adam McManus.

CATHERINE: Yes, Hi. I don't claim to understand everything about this, but number one, how did Terri get to the hospice unit? Did Michael approve the insertion of the feeding tube then? And why, if he approved of it then, why does he not now?

MCMANUS: I do have information about why she was brought to the hospice. Number one--George Greer, excuse me, George Felos, the attorney for Michael Schiavo, sits on the board of the hospice. She has never been terminal. And yet, on her chart dated April 11, 2000, the medical director, William Moore, wrote: "Based on the patient's diagnosis and current condition, I expect this patient has a limited life expectancy of six months or less, if disease continues to take its usual course, and hereby certify patient as eligible for hospice."

Terri was never terminal. Never had a disease. Certainly has lived for five years since then, and has been healthy, despite her brain damage, has been healthy.

And the feeding tube was authorized for the convenience of the caregiver. She had, even as of March 18, when the feeding tube was taken out, the ability to swallow. Many medical professionals said that she was spoon fed pudding, but the feeding tube was put in her, delivering those three cans of Ensure daily, for the convenience of the caregivers. And also when you're brain damaged, you have some difficulty swallowing. She was denied swallowing therapy since 1993, when Michael Schiavo was given this particular $1,200,000 award. Alan Keyes, your thought.

KEYES: It's particularly ironic, Adam. Everything you just said is accurate. And what's particularly ironic is, during the malpractice suit, as you know, he had declared that he was a devoted husband, and that he was going to care for his wife for the rest of his life. And they estimated her potential life expectancy for purposes of the award at about 50 years. There was no question at that time of some disease taking its natural course in six months or even several years. But at 50 years, she [unintelligible], just like somebody who has had a limb amputated. They have suffered a disability, but they can be perfectly healthy in the face of the consequences thereof once that heals. And so, the whole idea that you're dealing with a terminally ill patient is simply a lie. She was not terminal until they starved her.

MCMANUS: My guest, Alan Keyes.

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