Schiavo Case

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A source close to the case tells The Associated Press Terri Schiavo's (SHY'-vohz) feeding tube has been removed.

A judge had ruled about three hours earlier that the tube needed to be taken out -- despite an extraordinary push by congressional Republicans to keep the brain-damaged woman alive.

House and Senate panels had issued subpoenas for Schiavo and her
husband to testify later this month.

The judge said he saw no reason for lawmakers to step in. He said last-minute action by Congress shouldn't invalidate years of legal rulings.

Doctors have said Schiavo is in a persistent vegetative state. Her husband has argued she didn't want to be kept alive that way. But her family has held out hope she will recover and has fought efforts to remove the tube.

It's expected to take up to two weeks after the tube's removal for Schiavo to die, if the tube isn't reinserted.