Thursday, October 28, 2010

Brewer v. Landrigan, 131 S.Ct. 445 (2010)

The Ninth Circuit affirmed a District Court injunction (after the state court refused to do so) mandating Arizona officials to disclose the efficacy of a drug obtained from foreign sources and not specifically approved for use in execution. Arizona appealed to the Supreme Court. Here is the order of the Supreme Court reversing the Ninth Circuit: "There is no evidence in the record to suggest that the drug obtained from a foreign source is unsafe. The district court granted the restraining order because it was left to speculate as to the risk of harm. [Citing the District Court:'[T]he [District] Court is left to speculate. . .whether the non-FDA approved drug will cause pain and suffering.']. But speculation cannot substitute for evidence that the use of the drug is 'sure or very likely to cause serious illness and needless suffering;' Baze v. Rees, 553 U. S. 35, 50 (2008). There was no showing that the drug was unlawfully obtained, nor was there an offer of proof to that effect. The motion to file documents under seal is denied as moot." To say that the Ninth Circuit decision affirming the District Court injunction against the use of a drug not approved by the FDA is specious would be an understatement. Landrigan was convicted in 1989 and the Ninth Circuit continues to undermine the death penalty with ideology-not law.

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