by D.W. Ulsterman
The body of a Supreme Court Justice of the United States is discovered unresponsive and with a pillow over his head.
That is both the beginning of a seeming Hollywood suspense mystery and the real-life account of Justice Antonin Scalia, the most consistently conservative member of the Supreme Court and one who was a judicial thorn in the side of the Obama administration.
It would seem that thorn has now been effectively removed for good.
In the proceeding 72-hours since Scalia’s death was announced by the media, the primary account of how he was found and the resulting actions that followed come from this man, John Poindexter, a Texas millionaire businessman (no relation to the John Poindexter of the Reagan administration) Democratic Party donor, and owner of the ranch resort where Justice Scalia is said to have breathed his last.
Oh, and Mr. Poindexter was also a personal guest of the Obama White House:
The above photo is from an August, 2010 White House ceremony in which Barack Obama gave Mr. Poindexter and the surviving members of the Vietnam War unit Poindexter commanded, the Presidential Unit Citation – the highest award a military unit can receive. On the surface such an award seems a valued gesture from a Commander in Chief to former and deserving soldiers.
Was it merely a public relations stunt by the Obama White House desperate to gain some needed military street cred, or a return payment for something Mr. Poindexter did in the way of political fundraising…or other?
That question will likely remain unanswered.
Perhaps Mr. Poindexter’s relationship to Mr. Obama is nothing.
Or perhaps it is something.
What is known is this, it was John Poindexter who told media he found Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia in his room dressed in pajamas on a bed with, “… a pillow over his head.”
Another somewhat odd bit of information Mr. Poindexter included in his summary description of his discovery of Scalia’s body was of the Supreme Court Justice’s bed clothes/pajamas:
“His bed clothes were unwrinkled.”
The rather pristine condition of Justice Scalia’s “bed clothes” would appear to indicate the Supreme Court Justice laid down on the bed and then in short order, proceeded to die. Otherwise, his bed clothing would have indicated movement and resulting wrinkles in said clothing.
What follows is where the tale goes from odd, to downright troubling.
Initial media reports indicated Justice Scalia died of a heart attack. This was then revised as it was discovered there was no actual medical examination performed on Scalia. He had been declared dead by a medical examiner over the phone.
Such a declaration is in and of itself, not an entirely rare occurrence, particular in rural areas. What makes this case rare is who the death involved – A MEMBER OF THE UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT.
Remember, there is an eyewitness account of the Scalia, who was said to be in good spirits the previous night, having been found with a pillow over its head and no indication of movement in the bed. That evidence alone would necessitate a far more swift and thorough response from federal authorities immediately upon hearing of Justice Scalia’s demise.
No such response was forthcoming. In fact, it was apparently hours after Scalia was found dead that authorities finally arrived at the ranch resort and apparently by then, Justice Scalia’s body had already been removed and was being transported to the local morgue – again, WITHOUT A MEDICAL EXAMINATION.
It was then that more information remnants began to disseminate regarding how Scalia came to be a first-time guest at the Texas resort. He was just returned from a book tour trip overseas. The Justice apparently didn’t know anyone else at the resort. He was to meet his son there but his son then cancelled at the last minute. Several media reports indicated Scalia had declined to have his security detail with him.
He was, quite literally, all alone.
The speed at which he was declared dead of “natural causes” with no signs of foul play has also raised collective eyebrows. A Texas judge not affiliated with the case declared themselves stunned that no autopsy had been ordered given who the deceased was:
“If it had been me . . . I would want to know,” Juanita Bishop, a justice of the peace in Presidio, Tex., told The Post.”
Perhaps the single most conservative member of the United States Supreme Court was found dead at a ranch resort owned by a Democratic Party donor who had personal ties to the current Democrat President.
One would think that scenario alone is deserving of at least some contemplation.
What is known is this, President Barack Obama moved far more quickly to declare his intent to nominate a replacement for Justice Antonin Scalia than federal authorities moved to investigate the facts surrounding Justice Scalia’s death:
“I plan to fulfill my constitutional responsibility to nominate a successor…”
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia was quite possibly the most incisive and influential conservative mind of the last thirty years, one of the last remaining links to the modern American golden era that was the Reagan Years. His legal opinions were well thought out, meticulous, and delivered with equal parts judicial courage and competence.
His death deserved the same.