A Texas judge has ruled that there will be no autopsy for Scalia. Since law enforcement said there were no signs of foul play, and his doctor told the judge that he had been ill, Presidio County Judge Cinderela Guevara ruled that “no autopsy was necessary” according to ABC News.
I find it amazing that such a pivotal person in our nation’s political order would be able to unexpectedly die alone and not receive a perfunctory autopsy. Don’t take my word for it. Listen to the words of Judge Guevara herself as reported by WFAA:
“After I did my job, yes… I kept playing it over and over in my mind and thought, ‘Oh my God. History is being made in Presidio County,” Guevara told WFAA. “It’s something I’ll never forget.”
History was made but her investigation consisted of phone calls. She didn’t go to the scene or even interview the Sherriff or U.S. Marshall in person.
This is all published under the headline, “Scalia’s death to be ruled a heart attack.” But that was not the original headline according to the URL: http://www.wfaa.com/news/local/texas-news/scalia-to-have-autopsy-in-texas-according-to-state-law/42898331. “Scalia to have autopsy in Texas according to state law.”
Move along. Nothing to see here. Nothing to question. History has been made but the judge can make a phone call to his doctor, find he had “suffered from several chronic ailments,” and decided to rule the death a heart attack. Yet, even after going to that doctor for a shoulder injury shortly before, Scalia believed he was healthy enough for the hunting trip. Neither he nor his doctor thought these “chronic ailments,” whatever they were, were serious enough to even require rest at home, let alone hospitalization. But they are enough to allow the judge to decide there will be no autopsy for Scalia and declare a cause of death based on her amazing medical expertise.
Then there is this headline from the Washington Post: “The death of Antonin Scalia: Chaos, confusion and conflicting reports.”
It then took hours for authorities in remote West Texas to find a justice of the peace, officials said Sunday. When they did, she pronounced Scalia dead of natural causes without seeing the body and decided not to order an autopsy. A second justice of the peace, who was called but couldn’t get to Scalia’s body in time, said she would have ordered an autopsy.
Meanwhile, since none of us are conspiracy theorists who believe that there are any evil people in power in this country who would commit a murder, let’s “move on” to a SCOTUS blog post (emphasis mine):
The passing of Justice Scalia of course affects the cases now before the Court. Votes that the Justice cast in cases that have not been publicly decided are void. Of course, if Justice Scalia’s vote was not necessary to the outcome – for example, if he was in the dissent or if the majority included more than five Justices – then the case will still be decided, only by an eight-member Court.
If Justice Scalia was part of a five-Justice majority in a case – for example, the Friedrichs case, in which the Court was expected to limit mandatory union contributions – the Court is now divided four to four. In those cases, there is no majority for a decision and the lower court’s ruling stands, as if the Supreme Court had never heard the case.
There are other cases as well, but this one alone is interesting. Unions would have lost a lot of money if Scalia had lived long enough to make the ruling official. Along with the money, they would have become less useful to Democrats and, therefore, might have lost some of their protection and support from Democrats.
Here is Howard Dean (at 1:30) defending Hillary Clinton by admitting that labor unions are SuperPACs for Democrats.
There should have been an autopsy for Scalia!