The questions presented are whether Terry Williams' constitutional right to the effective assistance of counsel as defined in Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (1984), was violated, and whether the judgment of the Virginia Supreme Court refusing to set aside his death sentence "was contrary to, or involved an unreasonable application of, clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States," within the meaning of 28 U. S. C. § 2254(d)(1) (1994 ed., Supp. III). We answer both questions affirmatively.
On November 3, 1985, Harris Stone was found dead in his residence on Henry Street in Danville, Virginia. Finding no indication of a struggle, local officials determined that the cause of death was blood alcohol poisoning, and the case was considered closed. Six months after Stone's death, Terry Williams, who was then incarcerated in the "I" unit of the city jail for an unrelated offense, wrote a letter to the police stating that he had killed "`that man down on Henry Street' " and also stating that he "`did it' " to that "`lady down on West Green Street' " and was "`very sorry.' " The letter was unsigned, but it closed with a reference to "I cell." App. 41. The police readily identified Williams as its author, and, on April 25, 1986, they obtained several statements from him. In one Williams admitted that, after Stone refused to lend him "`a couple of dollars,' " he had killed Stone with a
At Williams' sentencing hearing, the prosecution proved that Williams had been convicted of armed robbery in 1976 and burglary and grand larceny in 1982. The prosecution also introduced the written confessions that Williams had made in April. The prosecution described two auto thefts and two separate violent assaults on elderly victims perpetrated after the Stone murder. On December 4, 1985, Williams had started a fire outside one victim's residence before attacking and robbing him. On March 5, 1986, Williams had brutally assaulted an elderly woman on West Green Street— an incident he had mentioned in his letter to the police. That confession was particularly damaging because other evidence established that the woman was in a "vegetative state" and not expected to recover. Id., at 60. Williams had also been convicted of arson for setting a fire in the jail while awaiting trial in this case. Two expert witnesses employed by the State testified that there was a "high probability"
The evidence offered by Williams' trial counsel at the sentencing hearing consisted of the testimony of Williams' mother, two neighbors, and a taped excerpt from a statement by a psychiatrist. One of the neighbors had not been previously interviewed by defense counsel, but was noticed by counsel in the audience during the proceedings and asked to testify on the spot. The three witnesses briefly described Williams as a "nice boy" and not a violent person. Id., at 124. The recorded psychiatrist's testimony did little more than relate Williams' statement during an examination that in the course of one of his earlier robberies, he had removed the bullets from a gun so as not to injure anyone.
In his cross-examination of the prosecution witnesses, Williams' counsel repeatedly emphasized the fact that Williams had initiated the contact with the police that enabled them to solve the murder and to identify him as the perpetrator of the recent assaults, as well as the car thefts. In closing argument, Williams' counsel characterized Williams' confessional statements as "dumb," but asked the jury to give weight to the fact that he had "turned himself in, not on one crime but on four . . . that the [police otherwise] would not have solved." Id., at 140. The weight of defense counsel's closing, however, was devoted to explaining that it was difficult to find a reason why the jury should spare Williams' life.
State Habeas Corpus Proceedings
In 1988 Williams filed for state collateral relief in the Danville Circuit Court. The petition was subsequently amended, and the Circuit Court (the same judge who had presided over Williams' trial and sentencing) held an evidentiary hearing on Williams' claim that trial counsel had been ineffective.
Counsel's failure to discover and present this and other significant mitigating evidence was "below the range expected of reasonable, professional competent assistance of counsel." Id., at 424. Counsel's performance thus "did not measure up to the standard required under the holding of Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (1984), and [if it had,] there is a reasonable probability that the result of the sentencing phase would have been different." Id., at 429. Judge Ingram therefore recommended that Williams be granted a rehearing on the sentencing phase of his trial.
The Virginia Supreme Court did not accept that recommendation. Williams v. Warden, 254 Va. 16, 487 S.E.2d 194 (1997). Although it assumed, without deciding, that trial counsel had been ineffective, id., at 23-26, 487 S. E. 2d, at 198, 200, it disagreed with the trial judge's conclusion that Williams had suffered sufficient prejudice to warrant relief. Treating the prejudice inquiry as a mixed question of law and fact, the Virginia Supreme Court accepted the factual determination that available evidence in mitigation had not been presented at the trial, but held that the trial judge had misapplied the law in two respects. First, relying on our decision in Lockhart v. Fretwell, 506 U.S. 364 (1993), the court held that it was wrong for the trial judge to rely "`on mere outcome determination' " when assessing prejudice, 254 Va., at 23, 487 S. E. 2d, at 198 (quoting Lockhart, 506 U. S., at 369). Second, it construed the trial judge's opinion as having "adopted a per se approach" that would establish prejudice whenever any mitigating evidence was omitted. 254 Va., at 26, 487 S. E. 2d, at 200.
The court then reviewed the prosecution evidence supporting the "future dangerousness" aggravating circumstance, reciting Williams' criminal history, including the several
Federal Habeas Corpus Proceedings
Having exhausted his state remedies, Williams sought a federal writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U. S. C. § 2254 (1994 ed. and Supp. III). After reviewing the state habeas hearing transcript and the state courts' findings of fact and conclusions of law, the federal trial judge agreed with the Virginia trial judge: The death sentence was constitutionally infirm.
After noting that the Virginia Supreme Court had not addressed the question whether trial counsel's performance at the sentencing hearing fellbelow the range of competence demanded of lawyers in criminal cases, the judge began by addressing that issue in detail. He identified five categories of mitigating evidence that counsel had failed to introduce,
According to Williams' trial counsel's testimony before the state habeas court, counsel did not fail to seek Williams' juvenile and social services records because he thought they would be counterproductive, but because counsel erroneously believed that "`state law didn't permit it.' " App. 470. Counsel also acknowledged in the course of the hearings that information about Williams' childhood would have been important in mitigation. And counsel's failure to contact a potentially persuasive character witness was likewise not a conscious strategic choice, but simply a failure to return that witness' phone call offering his service. Id., at 470-471. Finally, even if counsel neglected to conduct such an investigation at the time as part of a tactical decision, the District Judge found, tactics as a matter of reasonable performance could not justify the omissions.
Turning to the prejudice issue, the judge determined that there was "`a reasonable probability that, but for counsel's unprofessional errors, the result of the proceeding would have been different.' Strickland, 466 U. S. at 694." Id., at 473. He found that the Virginia Supreme Court had erroneously assumed that Lockhart had modified the Strickland standard for determining prejudice, and that it had made an important error of fact in discussing its finding of no prejudice.
The Federal Court of Appeals reversed. 163 F.3d 860 (CA4 1998). It construed § 2254(d)(1) as prohibiting the grant of habeas corpus relief unless the state court "`decided the question by interpreting or applying the relevant precedent in a manner that reasonable jurists would all agree is unreasonable.' " Id., at 865 (quoting Green v. French, 143 F.3d 865, 870 (CA4 1998)). Applying that standard, it could not say that the Virginia Supreme Court's decision on the prejudice issue was an unreasonable application of the tests developed in either Strickland or Lockhart.
We granted certiorari, 526 U.S. 1050 (1999), and now reverse.
In 1867, Congress enacted a statute providing that federal courts "shall have power to grant writs of habeas corpus in
The warden here contends that federal habeas corpus relief is prohibited by the amendment to 28 U. S. C. § 2254 (1994 ed., Supp. III), enacted as a part of the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (AEDPA). The relevant portion of that amendment provides:
In this case, the Court of Appeals applied the construction of the amendment that it had adopted in its earlier opinion in Green v. French, 143 F.3d 865 (CA4 1998). It read the amendment as prohibiting federal courts from issuing the writ unless:
Accordingly, it held that a federal court may issue habeas relief only if "`the state courts have decided the question by interpreting or applying the relevant precedent in a manner that reasonable jurists would all agree is unreasonable,' " 163 F. 3d, at 865.
As the Fourth Circuit would have it, a state-court judgment is "unreasonable" in the face of federal law only if all reasonable jurists would agree that the state court was unreasonable. Thus, in this case, for example, even if the Virginia Supreme Court misread our opinion in Lockhart, we could not grant relief unless we believed that none of the judges who agreed with the state court's interpretation of that case was a "reasonable jurist." But the statute says
The inquiry mandated by the amendment relates to the way in which a federal habeas court exercises its duty to decide constitutional questions; the amendment does not alter the underlying grant of jurisdiction in § 2254(a), see n. 7, supra.
This basic premise informs our interpretation of both parts of § 2254(d)(1): first, the requirement that the determinations of state courts be tested only against "clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States," and second, the prohibition on the issuance of the writ unless the state court's decision is "contrary to, or involved an unreasonable application of," that clearly established law. We address each part in turn.
The "clearly established law" requirement
In Teague v. Lane, 489 U.S. 288 (1989), we held that the petitioner was not entitled to federal habeas relief because he was relying on a rule of federal law that had not been announced until after his state conviction became final. The antiretroactivity rule recognized in Teague, which prohibits reliance on "new rules," is the functional equivalent of a statutory provision commanding exclusive reliance on "clearly established law." Because there is no reason to believe that Congress intended to require federal courts to ask both whether a rule sought on habeas is "new" under Teague — which remains the law—and also whether it is "clearly established" under AEDPA, it seems safe to assume that Congress
Teague `s core principles are therefore relevant to our construction of this requirement. Justice Harlan recognized
To this, AEDPA has added, immediately following the "clearly established law" requirement, a clause limiting the area of relevant law to that "determined by the Supreme Court of the United States." 28 U. S. C. § 2254(d)(1) (1994 ed., Supp. III). If this Court has not broken sufficient legal ground to establish an asked-for constitutional principle, the lower federal courts cannot themselves establish such a principle with clarity sufficient to satisfy the AEDPA bar. In this respect, we agree with the Seventh Circuit that this clause "extends the principle of Teague by limiting the source of doctrine on which a federal court may rely in addressing the application for a writ." Lindh v. Murphy, 96 F.3d 856, 869 (1996). As that court explained:
A rule that fails to satisfy the foregoing criteria is barred by Teague from application on collateral review, and, similarly, is not available as a basis for relief in a habeas case to which AEDPA applies.
In the context of this case, we also note that, as our precedent interpreting Teague has demonstrated, rules of law may be sufficiently clear for habeas purposes even when they are expressed in terms of a generalized standard rather than as a bright-line rule. As Justice Kennedy has explained:
Moreover, the determination whether or not a rule is clearly established at the time a state court renders its final judgment of conviction is a question as to which the "federal courts must make an independent evaluation." Id., at 305 (O'Connor, J., concurring in judgment); accord, id., at 307 (Kennedy, J., concurring in judgment).
It has been urged, in contrast, that we should read Teague and its progeny to encompass a broader principle of deference requiring federal courts to "validat[e] `reasonable, good-faith interpretations' of the law" by state courts.
Teague, however, does not extend this far. The often repeated language that Teague endorses "reasonable, goodfaith interpretations" by state courts is an explanation of policy, not a statement of law. The Teague cases reflect this Court's view that habeas corpus is not to be used as a second criminal trial, and federal courts are not to run roughshod over the considered findings and judgments of the state courts that conducted the original trial and heard the initial appeals. On the contrary, we have long insisted that federal habeas courts attend closely to those considered decisions, and give them full effect when their findings and judgments are consistent with federal law. See Thompson v. Keohane, 516 U.S. 99, 107-116 (1995). But as Justice O'Connor explained in Wright:
We are convinced that in the phrase, "clearly established law," Congress did not intend to modify that independent obligation.
The "contrary to, or an unreasonable application of," requirement
The message that Congress intended to convey by using the phrases "contrary to" and "unreasonable application of" is not entirely clear. The prevailing view in the Circuits is that the former phrase requires de novo review of "pure" questions of law and the latter requires some sort of "reasonability" review of so-called mixed questions of law and fact. See, e. g., Neelley v. Nagle, 138 F.3d 917 (CA11 1998); Drinkard v. Johnson, 97 F.3d 751 (CA5 1996); Lindh v. Murphy, 96 F.3d 856 (CA7 1996) (en banc), rev'd on other grounds, 521 U.S. 320 (1997).
We are not persuaded that the phrases define two mutually exclusive categories of questions. Most constitutional questions that arise in habeas corpus proceedings—and therefore most "decisions" to be made—require the federal judge to apply a rule of law to a set of facts, some of which may be disputed and some undisputed. For example, an erroneous conclusion that particular circumstances established the voluntariness of a confession, or that there exists a conflict of interest when one attorney represents multiple defendants, may well be described either as "contrary to" or as an "unreasonable application of" the governing rule of law. Cf. Miller v. Fenton, 474 U.S. 104, 116 (1985); Cuyler v. Sullivan, 446 U.S. 335, 341-342 (1980). In constitutional adjudication, as in the common law, rules of law often develop
Indeed, our pre-AEDPA efforts to distinguish questions of fact, questions of law, and "mixed questions," and to create an appropriate standard of habeas review for each, generated some not insubstantial differences of opinion as to which issues of law fell into which category of question, and as to which standard of review applied to each. See Thompson, 516 U. S., at 110-111 (acknowledging "`that the Court has not charted an entirely clear course in this area' " and that "the proper characterization of a question as one of fact or law is sometimes slippery") (quoting Miller, 474 U. S., at 113). We thus think the Fourth Circuit was correct when it attributed the lack of clarity in the statute, in part, to the overlapping meanings of the phrases "contrary to" and "unreasonable application of." See Green, 143 F. 3d, at 870.
The statutory text likewise does not obviously prescribe a specific, recognizable standard of review for dealing with either phrase. Significantly, it does not use any term, such as "de novo" or "plain error," that would easily identify a familiar standard of review. Rather, the text is fairly read simply as a command that a federal court not issue the habeas writ unless the state court was wrong as a matter of law or unreasonable in its application of law in a given case. The suggestion that a wrong state-court "decision"—a legal judgment rendered "after consideration of facts, and . . . law, " Black's Law Dictionary 407 (6th ed. 1990) (emphasis added)—may no longer be redressed through habeas (because it is unreachable under the "unreasonable application" phrase) is based on a mistaken insistence that the § 2254(d)(1) phrases have not only independent, but mutually exclusive, meanings. Whether or not a federal court can issue the writ "under [the] `unreasonable application' clause," the statute is
Even though we cannot conclude that the phrases establish "a body of rigid rules," they do express a "mood" that the Federal Judiciary must respect. Universal Camera Corp. v. NLRB, 340 U.S. 474, 487 (1951). In this respect, it seems clear that Congress intended federal judges to attend with the utmost care to state-court decisions, including all of the reasons supporting their decisions, before concluding that those proceedings were infected by constitutional error sufficiently serious to warrant the issuance of the writ. Likewise, the statute in a separate provision provides for the habeas remedy when a state-court decision "was based on an unreasonable determination of the facts in light of the evidence presented in the State court proceeding. " 28 U. S. C. § 2254(d)(2) (1994 ed., Supp. III) (emphasis added). While this provision is not before us in this case, it provides relevant context for our interpretation of § 2254(d)(1); in this respect, it bolsters our conviction that federal habeas courts must make as the starting point of their analysis the state courts' determinations of fact, including that aspect of a "mixed question" that rests on a finding of fact. AEDPA plainly sought to ensure a level of "deference to the determinations of state courts," provided those determinations did not conflict with federal law or apply federal law in an unreasonable way. H. R. Conf. Rep. No. 104-518, p. 111 (1996). Congress wished to curb delays, to prevent "retrials" on federal habeas, and to give effect to state convictions to the extent possible under law. When federal courts are able to fulfill these goals within the bounds of the law, AEDPA instructs them to do so.
On the other hand, it is significant that the word "deference" does not appear in the text of the statute itself. Neither the legislative history nor the statutory text suggests
In sum, the statute directs federal courts to attend to every state-court judgment with utmost care, but it does not require them to defer to the opinion of every reasonable state-court judge on the content of federal law. If, after carefully weighing all the reasons for accepting a state court's judgment, a federal court is convinced that a prisoner's custody—or, as in this case, his sentence of death—violates the Constitution, that independent judgment should prevail. Otherwise the federal "law as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States" might be applied by the federal courts one way in Virginia and another way in California. In light of the well-recognized interest in ensuring that federal courts interpret federal law in a uniform
In this case, Williams contends that he was denied his constitutionally guaranteed right to the effective assistance of counsel when his trial lawyers failed to investigate and to present substantial mitigating evidence to the sentencing jury. The threshold question under AEDPA is whether Williams seeks to apply a rule of law that was clearly established at the time his state-court conviction became final. That question is easily answered because the merits of his claim are squarely governed by our holding in Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (1984).
We explained in Strickland that a violation of the right on which Williams relies has two components:
To establish ineffectiveness, a "defendant must show that counsel's representation fell below an objective standard of
It is past question that the rule set forth in Strickland qualifies as "clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States." That the Strickland test "of necessity requires a case-by-case examination of the evidence," Wright, 505 U. S., at 308 (Kennedy, J., concurring in judgment), obviates neither the clarity of the rule nor the extent to which the rule must be seen as "established" by this Court. This Court's precedent "dictated" that the Virginia Supreme Court apply the Strickland test at the time that court entertained Williams' ineffectiveassistance claim. Teague, 489 U. S., at 301. And it can hardly be said that recognizing the right to effective counsel "breaks new ground or imposes a new obligation on the States," ibid. Williams is therefore entitled to relief if the Virginia Supreme Court's decision rejecting his ineffectiveassistance claim was either "contrary to, or involved an unreasonable application of," that established law. It was both.
The Virginia Supreme Court erred in holding that our decision in Lockhart v. Fretwell, 506 U.S. 364 (1993), modified or in some way supplanted the rule set down in Strickland. It is true that while the Strickland test provides sufficient guidance for resolving virtually all ineffective-assistance-ofcounsel claims, there are situations in which the overriding focus on fundamental fairness may affect the analysis. Thus, on the one hand, as Strickland itself explained, there are a few situations in which prejudice may be presumed. 466 U. S., at 692. And, on the other hand, there are also situations in which it would be unjust to characterize the
Similarly, in Lockhart, we concluded that, given the overriding interest in fundamental fairness, the likelihood of a different outcome attributable to an incorrect interpretation of the law should be regarded as a potential "windfall" to the defendant rather than the legitimate "prejudice" contemplated by our opinion in Strickland. The death sentence that Arkansas had imposed on Bobby Ray Fretwell was based on an aggravating circumstance (murder committed for pecuniary gain) that duplicated an element of the underlying felony (murder in the course of a robbery). Shortly before the trial, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit had held that such "double counting" was impermissible, see Collins v. Lockhart, 754 F.2d 258, 265 (1985), but Fretwell's lawyer (presumably because he was unaware of the Collins decision) failed to object to the use of the pecuniary gain aggravator. Before Fretwell's claim for federal habeas corpus relief reached this Court, the Collins case was overruled.
Cases such as Nix v. Whiteside, 475 U.S. 157 (1986), and Lockhart v. Fretwell, 506 U.S. 364 (1993), do not justify a departure from a straightforward application of Strickland when the ineffectiveness of counsel does deprive the defendant of a substantive or procedural right to which the law entitles him.
Nevertheless, the Virginia Supreme Court read our decision in Lockhart to require a separate inquiry into fundamental fairness even when Williams is able to show that his lawyer was ineffective and that his ineffectiveness probably affected the outcome of the proceeding. It wrote:
Unlike the Virginia Supreme Court, the state trial judge omitted any reference to Lockhart and simply relied on our opinion in Strickland as stating the correct standard for judging ineffective-assistance claims. With respect to the prejudice component, he wrote:
We are likewise persuaded that the Virginia trial judge correctly applied both components of that standard to Williams' ineffectiveness claim. Although he concluded that counsel competently handled the guilt phase of the trial, he found that their representation during the sentencing phase fell short of professional standards—a judgment barely disputed by the State in its brief to this Court. The record establishes that counsel did not begin to prepare for that phase of the proceeding until a week before the trial. Id., at 207, 227. They failed to conduct an investigation that would have uncovered extensive records graphically describing Williams' nightmarish childhood, not because of any strategic calculation but because they incorrectly thought that state law barred access to such records. Had they done so, the jury would have learned that Williams' parents had been imprisoned for the criminal neglect of Williams and his siblings,
Of course, not all of the additional evidence was favorable to Williams. The juvenile records revealed that he had been thrice committed to the juvenile system—for aiding and abetting larceny when he was 11 years old, for pulling a false fire alarm when he was 12, and for breaking and entering when he was 15. Id., at 534-536. But as the Federal District Court correctly observed, the failure to introduce the comparatively voluminous amount of evidence that did speak in Williams' favor was not justified by a tactical decision to focus on Williams' voluntary confession. Whether or not those omissions were sufficiently prejudicial to have affected the outcome of sentencing, they clearly demonstrate that trial counsel did not fulfill their obligation to conduct a thorough investigation of the defendant's background. See 1 ABA Standards for Criminal Justice 4-4.1, commentary, p. 4-55 (2d ed. 1980).
We are also persuaded, unlike the Virginia Supreme Court, that counsel's unprofessional service prejudiced Williams within the meaning of Strickland. After hearing the additional evidence developed in the postconviction proceedings, the very judge who presided at Williams' trial, and who once
The Virginia Supreme Court's own analysis of prejudice reaching the contrary conclusion was thus unreasonable in at least two respects. First, as we have already explained, the State Supreme Court mischaracterized at best the appropriate rule, made clear by this Court in Strickland, for determining whether counsel's assistance was effective within the meaning of the Constitution. While it may also have conducted an "outcome determinative" analysis of its own, 254 Va., at 27, 487 S. E. 2d, at 200, it is evident to us that the court's decision turned on its erroneous view that a "mere" difference in outcome is not sufficient to establish constitutionally ineffective assistance of counsel. See supra, at 394. Its analysis in this respect was thus not only "contrary to," but also, inasmuch as the Virginia Supreme Court relied on the inapplicable exception recognized in Lockhart, an "unreasonable application of" the clear law as established by this Court.
Second, the State Supreme Court's prejudice determination was unreasonable insofar as it failed to evaluate the totality of the available mitigation evidence—both that adduced at trial, and the evidence adduced in the habeas proceeding—in
But the state court failed even to mention the sole argument in mitigation that trial counsel did advance—Williams turned himself in, alerting police to a crime they otherwise would never have discovered, expressing remorse for his actions, and cooperating with the police after that. While this, coupled with the prison records and guard testimony, may not have overcome a finding of future dangerousness, the graphic description of Williams' childhood, filled with abuse and privation, or the reality that he was "borderline mentally retarded," might well have influenced the jury's appraisal of his moral culpability. See Boyde v. California, 494 U.S. 370, 387 (1990). The circumstances recited in his several confessions are consistent with the view that in each case his violent behavior was a compulsive reaction rather than the product of cold-blooded premeditation. Mitigating evidence unrelated to dangerousness may alter the jury's selection of penalty, even if it does not undermine or rebut the prosecution's death-eligibility case. The Virginia Supreme Court did not entertain that possibility. It thus failed to accord appropriate weight to the body of mitigation evidence available to trial counsel.
In our judgment, the state trial judge was correct both in his recognition of the established legal standard for determining
Accordingly, the judgment of the Court of Appeals is reversed, and the case is remanded for further proceedings.
It is so ordered.
Justice O'Connor delivered the opinion of the Court with respect to Part II (except as to the footnote), concurred in part, and concurred in the judgment.
In 1996, Congress enacted the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA). In that Act, Congress placed a new restriction on the power of federal courts to grant writs of habeas corpus to state prisoners. The relevant provision, 28 U. S. C. § 2254(d)(1) (1994 ed., Supp. III), prohibits a federal court from granting an application for a writ of habeas corpus with respect to a claim adjudicated on the merits in state court unless that adjudication "resulted in a decision that was contrary to, or involved an unreasonable application of, clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States." The Court holds today that the Virginia Supreme Court's adjudication
Before 1996, this Court held that a federal court entertaining a state prisoner's application for habeas relief must exercise its independent judgment when deciding both questions of constitutional law and mixed constitutional questions (i. e., application of constitutional law to fact). See, e. g., Miller v. Fenton, 474 U.S. 104, 112 (1985). In other words, a federal habeas court owed no deference to a state court's resolution of such questions of law or mixed questions. In 1991, in the case of Wright v. West, 502 U.S. 1021, we revisited our prior holdings by asking the parties to address the following question in their briefs:
Although our ultimate decision did not turn on the answer to that question, our several opinions did join issue on it. See Wright v. West, 505 U.S. 277 (1992).
Justice Thomas, announcing the judgment of the Court, acknowledged that our precedents had "treat[ed] as settled the rule that mixed constitutional questions are `subject to plenary federal review' on habeas." Id., at 289 (quoting Miller, supra, at 112). He contended, nevertheless, that those decisions did not foreclose the Court from applying a rule of deferential review for reasonableness in future cases.
I wrote separately in Wright because I believed Justice Thomas had "understate[d] the certainty with which Brown v. Allen rejected a deferential standard of review of issues of law." Id., at 300. I also explained that we had considered the standard of review applicable to mixed constitutional questions on numerous occasions and each time we concluded that federal habeas courts had a duty to evaluate such questions independently. Id., at 301-303. With respect to Justice Thomas' suggestion that Teague and its progeny called into question the vitality of the independentreview rule, I noted that "Teague did not establish a `deferential' standard of review" because "[i]t did not establish a standard of review at all." 505 U. S., at 303-304. While Teague did hold that state prisoners could not receive "the retroactive benefit of new rules of law," it "did not create any deferential standard of review with regard to old rules." 505 U. S., at 304 (emphasis in original).
Finally, and perhaps most importantly for purposes of today's case, I stated my disagreement with Justice Thomas' suggestion that de novo review is incompatible with the maxim that federal habeas courts should "give great weight to the considered conclusions of a coequal state judiciary," Miller, supra, at 112. Our statement in Miller signified
If today's case were governed by the federal habeas statute prior to Congress' enactment of AEDPA in 1996, I would agree with Justice Stevens that Williams' petition for habeas relief must be granted if we, in our independent judgment, were to conclude that his Sixth Amendment right to effective assistance of counsel was violated. See ante, at 389.
Williams' case is not governed by the pre-1996 version of the habeas statute. Because he filed his petition in December 1997, Williams' case is governed by the statute as amended by AEDPA. Section 2254 now provides:
Accordingly, for Williams to obtain federal habeas relief, he must first demonstrate that his case satisfies the condition set by § 2254(d)(1). That provision modifies the role of federal habeas courts in reviewing petitions filed by state prisoners.
Justice Stevens' opinion in Part II essentially contends that § 2254(d)(1) does not alter the previously settled rule of independent review. Indeed, the opinion concludes its statutory inquiry with the somewhat empty finding that § 2254(d)(1) does no more than express a "`mood' that the Federal Judiciary must respect." Ante, at 386. For Justice Stevens, the congressionally enacted "mood" has two important qualities. First, "federal courts [must] attend to every state-court judgment with utmost care" by "carefully weighing all the reasons for accepting a state court's judgment." Ante, at 389. Second, if a federal court undertakes that careful review and yet remains convinced that a prisoner's custody violates the Constitution, "that independent judgment should prevail." Ibid.
One need look no further than our decision in Miller to see that Justice Stevens' interpretation of § 2254(d)(1) gives the 1996 amendment no effect whatsoever. The command that federal courts should now use the "utmost care" by "carefully weighing" the reasons supporting a state court's judgment echoes our pre-AEDPA statement in Miller that federal habeas courts "should, of course, give great weight to the considered conclusions of a coequal state judiciary." 474 U. S., at 112. Similarly, the requirement that the independent judgment of a federal court must in the end prevail essentially repeats the conclusion we reached in the very next sentence in Miller with respect to the specific issue presented there: "But, as we now reaffirm, the ultimate question whether, under the totality of the circumstances, the challenged confession was obtained in a manner compatible
That Justice Stevens would find the new § 2254(d)(1) to have no effect on the prior law of habeas corpus is remarkable given his apparent acknowledgment that Congress wished to bring change to the field. See ante, at 386 ("Congress wished to curb delays, to prevent `retrials' on federal habeas, and to give effect to state convictions to the extent possible under law"). That acknowledgment is correct and significant to this case. It cannot be disputed that Congress viewed § 2254(d)(1) as an important means by which its goals for habeas reform would be achieved.
Justice Stevens arrives at his erroneous interpretation by means of one critical misstep. He fails to give independent meaning to both the "contrary to" and "unreasonable application" clauses of the statute. See, e. g., ante, at 384 ("We are not persuaded that the phrases define two mutually exclusive categories of questions"). By reading § 2254(d)(1) as one general restriction on the power of the federal habeas court, Justice Stevens manages to avoid confronting the specific meaning of the statute's "unreasonable application" clause and its ramifications for the independent-review rule. It is, however, a cardinal principle of statutory construction that we must "`give effect, if possible, to every clause and word of a statute.' " United States v. Menasche, 348 U.S. 528, 538-539 (1955) (quoting Montclair v. Ramsdell, 107 U.S. 147, 152 (1883)). Section 2254(d)(1) defines two categories of cases in which a state prisoner may obtain federal habeas relief with respect to a claim adjudicated on the merits in state court. Under the statute, a federal court may grant a writ of habeas corpus if the relevant state-court decision was either (1) "contrary to . . .clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States," or (2) "involved an unreasonable application of . . . clearly
The Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit properly accorded both the "contrary to" and "unreasonable application" clauses independent meaning. The Fourth Circuit's interpretation of § 2254(d)(1) in Williams' case relied, in turn, on that court's previous decision in Green v. French, 143 F.3d 865 (1998), cert. denied, 525 U.S. 1090 (1999). See 163 F.3d 860, 866 (CA4 1998) ("[T]he standard of review enunciated in Green v. French continues to be the binding law of this Circuit"). With respect to the first of the two statutory clauses, the Fourth Circuit held in Green that a state-court decision can be "contrary to" this Court's clearly established precedent in two ways. First, a state-court decision is contrary to this Court's precedent if the state court arrives at a conclusion opposite to that reached by this Court on a question of law. Second, a state-court decision is also contrary to this Court's precedent if the state court confronts facts that are materially indistinguishable from a relevant Supreme Court precedent and arrives at a result opposite to ours. See 143 F. 3d, at 869-870.
The word "contrary" is commonly understood to mean "diametrically different," "opposite in character or nature," or "mutually opposed." Webster's Third New International Dictionary 495 (1976). The text of § 2254(d)(1) therefore suggests that the state court's decision must be substantially different from the relevant precedent of this Court. The Fourth Circuit's interpretation of the "contrary to" clause accurately reflects this textual meaning. A state-court decision will certainly be contrary to our clearly established precedent if the state court applies a rule that contradicts the governing law set forth in our cases. Take, for example, our decision in Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (1984). If a state court were to reject a prisoner's claim of ineffective assistance of counsel on the grounds that the
On the other hand, a run-of-the-mill state-court decision applying the correct legal rule from our cases to the facts of a prisoner's case would not fit comfortably within § 2254(d)(1)'s "contrary to" clause. Assume, for example, that a state-court decision on a prisoner's ineffectiveassistance claim correctly identifies Strickland as the controlling legal authority and, applying that framework, rejects the prisoner's claim. Quite clearly, the state-court decision would be in accord with our decision in Strickland as to the legal prerequisites for establishing an ineffectiveassistance claim, even assuming the federal court considering the prisoner's habeas application might reach a different result applying the Strickland framework itself. It is difficult, however, to describe such a run-of-the-mill state-court decision as "diametrically different" from, "opposite in character or nature" from, or "mutually opposed" to Strickland, our clearly established precedent. Although the state-court decision may be contrary to the federal court's conception of how Strickland ought to be applied in that particular case, the decision is not "mutually opposed" to Strickland itself.
The Fourth Circuit's interpretation of the "unreasonable application" clause of § 2254(d)(1) is generally correct. That court held in Green that a state-court decision can involve an "unreasonable application" of this Court's clearly established precedent in two ways. First, a state-court decision involves an unreasonable application of this Court's precedent if the state court identifies the correct governing legal rule from this Court's cases but unreasonably applies it to the facts of the particular state prisoner's case. Second, a state-court decision also involves an unreasonable application of this Court's precedent if the state court either unreasonably extends a legal principle from our precedent to a new context where it should not apply or unreasonably refuses to extend that principle to a new context where it should apply. See 143 F. 3d, at 869-870.
A state-court decision that correctly identifies the governing legal rule but applies it unreasonably to the facts of a
The Fourth Circuit also held in Green that state-court decisions that unreasonably extend a legal principle from our precedent to a new context where it should not apply (or unreasonably refuse to extend a legal principle to a new context where it should apply) should be analyzed under § 2254(d)(1)'s "unreasonable application" clause. See 143 F. 3d, at 869-870. Although that holding may perhaps be correct, the classification does have some problems of precision. Just as it is sometimes difficult to distinguish a mixed question of law and fact from a question of fact, it will often be difficult to identify separately those state-court decisions that involve an unreasonable application of a legal principle (or an unreasonable failure to apply a legal principle) to a new context. Indeed, on the one hand, in some cases it will be hard to distinguish a decision involving an unreasonable extension of a legal principle from a decision involving an unreasonable application of law to facts. On the other hand, in many of the same cases it will also be difficult to distinguish a decision involving an unreasonable extension of a legal principle from a decision that "arrives at a conclusion opposite to that reached by this Court on a question of law," supra, at 405. Today's case does not require us to decide how
There remains the task of defining what exactly qualifies as an "unreasonable application" of law under § 2254(d)(1). The Fourth Circuit held in Green that a state-court decision involves an "unreasonable application of . . . clearly established Federal law" only if the state court has applied federal law "in a manner that reasonable jurists would all agree is unreasonable." 143 F. 3d, at 870. The placement of this additional overlay on the "unreasonable application" clause was erroneous. It is difficult to fault the Fourth Circuit for using this language given the fact that we have employed nearly identical terminology to describe the related inquiry undertaken by federal courts in applying the nonretroactivity rule of Teague. For example, in Lambrix v. Singletary, 520 U.S. 518 (1997), we stated that a new rule is not dictated by precedent unless it would be "apparent to all reasonable jurists. " Id., at 528 (emphasis added). In Graham v. Collins, 506 U.S. 461 (1993), another nonretroactivity case, we employed similar language, stating that we could not say "that all reasonable jurists would have deemed themselves compelled to accept Graham's claim in 1984." Id., at 477 (emphasis added).
Defining an "unreasonable application" by reference to a "reasonable jurist," however, is of little assistance to the courts that must apply § 2254(d)(1) and, in fact, may be misleading. Stated simply, a federal habeas court making the "unreasonable application" inquiry should ask whether the state court's application of clearly established federal law was objectively unreasonable. The federal habeas court
The term "unreasonable" is no doubt difficult to define. That said, it is a common term in the legal world and, accordingly, federal judges are familiar with its meaning. For purposes of today's opinion, the most important point is that an unreasonable application of federal law is different from an incorrect application of federal law. Our opinions in Wright, for example, make that difference clear. Justice Thomas' criticism of this Court's subsequent reliance on Brown turned on that distinction. The Court in Brown, Justice Thomas contended, held only that a federal habeas court must determine whether the relevant state-court adjudication resulted in a "`satisfactory conclusion.' " 505 U. S., at 287 (quoting Brown, 344 U. S., at 463). In Justice Thomas' view, Brown did not answer "the question whether a `satisfactory' conclusion was one that the habeas court considered
Justice Stevens turns a blind eye to the debate in Wright because he finds no indication in § 2254(d)(1) itself that Congress was "directly influenced" by Justice Thomas' opinion in Wright. Ante, at 387-388, n. 14. As Justice Stevens himself apparently recognizes, however, Congress need not mention a prior decision of this Court by name in a statute's text in order to adopt either a rule or a meaning given a certain term in that decision. See ante, at 380, n. 11. In any event, whether Congress intended to codify the standard of review suggested by Justice Thomas in Wright is beside the point. Wright is important for the light it sheds on § 2254(d)(1)'s requirement that a federal habeas court inquire into the reasonableness of a state court's application of clearly established federal law. The separate opinions in Wright concerned the very issue addressed by § 2254(d)(1)'s "unreasonable application" clause—whether, in reviewing a state-court decision on a state prisoner's claims under federal law, a federal habeas court should ask whether the state-court decision was correct or simply whether it was reasonable. Justice Stevens' claim that the debate in Wright concerned only the meaning of the Teague nonretroactivity
Throughout this discussion the meaning of the phrase "clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States" has been put to the side. That statutory phrase refers to the holdings, as opposed to the dicta, of this Court's decisions as of the time of the relevant state-court decision. In this respect, the "clearly established Federal law" phrase bears only a slight connection to our Teague jurisprudence. With one caveat, whatever would qualify as an old rule under our Teague jurisprudence will constitute "clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States" under § 2254(d)(1). See, e. g., Stringer v. Black, 503 U.S. 222, 228 (1992) (using term "old rule"). The one caveat, as the statutory language makes clear, is that § 2254(d)(1) restricts the source of clearly established law to this Court's jurisprudence.
In sum, § 2254(d)(1) places a new constraint on the power of a federal habeas court to grant a state prisoner's application for a writ of habeas corpus with respect to claims adjudicated on the merits in state court. Under § 2254(d)(1), the writ may issue only if one of the following two conditions is satisfied—the state-court adjudication resulted in a decision that (1) "was contrary to . . . clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States," or (2) "involved an unreasonable application of . . . clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States." Under the "contrary to"
Although I disagree with Justice Stevens concerning the standard we must apply under § 2254(d)(1) in evaluating Terry Williams' claims on habeas, I agree with the Court that the Virginia Supreme Court's adjudication of Williams' claim of ineffective assistance of counsel resulted in a decision that was both contrary to and involved an unreasonable application of this Court's clearly established precedent. Specifically, I believe that the Court's discussion in Parts III and IV is correct and that it demonstrates the reasons that the Virginia Supreme Court's decision in Williams' case, even under the interpretation of § 2254(d)(1) I have set forth above, was both contrary to and involved an unreasonable application of our precedent.
First, I agree with the Court that our decision in Strickland undoubtedly qualifies as "clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States," within the meaning of § 2254(d)(1). See ante, at 390-391. Second, I agree that the Virginia Supreme Court's decision was contrary to that clearly established federal law to the extent it held that our decision in Lockhart v. Fretwell, 506 U.S. 364 (1993), somehow modified or supplanted the rule set forth in Strickland. See ante, at 391-395, 397. Specifically, the Virginia Supreme Court's decision was contrary to Strickland itself, where we held that a defendant demonstrates prejudice by showing "that there is a reasonable
To be sure, as The Chief Justice notes, post, at 417-418 (opinion concurring in part and dissenting in part), the Virginia Supreme Court did also inquire whether Williams had demonstrated a reasonable probability that, but for his trial counsel's unprofessional errors, the result of his sentencing would have been different. See 254 Va., at 25-26, 487 S. E. 2d, at 199-200. It is impossible to determine, however, the extent to which the Virginia Supreme Court's error with respect to its reading of Lockhart affected its ultimate finding that Williams suffered no prejudice. For example, at the conclusion of its discussion of whether Williams had demonstrated a reasonable probability of a different outcome at sentencing, the Virginia Supreme Court faulted the Virginia Circuit Court for its "emphasis on mere outcome determination, without proper attention to whether the result of the criminal proceeding was fundamentally unfair or unreliable." 254 Va., at 27, 487 S. E. 2d, at 200. As the Court explains,
Third, I also agree with the Court that, to the extent the Virginia Supreme Court did apply Strickland, its application was unreasonable. See ante, at 395-398. As the Court correctly recounts, Williams' trial counsel failed to conduct an investigation that would have uncovered substantial amounts of mitigation evidence. See ante, at 395-396. For example, speaking only of that evidence concerning Williams' "nightmarish childhood," ante, at 395, the mitigation evidence that trial counsel failed to present to the jury showed that "Williams' parents had been imprisoned for the criminal neglect of Williams and his siblings, that Williams had been severely and repeatedly beaten by his father, that he had been committed to the custody of the social services bureau for two years during his parents' incarceration (including one stint in an abusive foster home), and then, after his parents were released from prison, had been returned to his parents' custody," ibid. (footnote omitted). See also ante, at 395, n. 19. The consequence of counsel's failure to conduct the requisite, diligent investigation into his client's troubling background and unique personal circumstances manifested itself during his generic, unapologetic closing argument, which provided the jury with no reasons to spare petitioner's life. More generally, the Virginia Circuit Court found that Williams' trial counsel failed to present evidence showing that Williams "had a deprived and abused upbringing; that he may have been a neglected and mistreated child; that he came from an alcoholic family; . . . that he was borderline mentally retarded;" and that "[his] conduct had been good in certain structured settings in his life (such as when he was incarcerated)." App. 422-423. In addition, the Circuit
Accordingly, although I disagree with the interpretation of § 2254(d)(1) set forth in Part II of Justice Stevens' opinion, I join Parts I, III, and IV of the Court's opinion and concur in the judgment of reversal.
Chief Justice Rehnquist, with whom Justice Scalia and Justice Thomas join, concurring in part and dissenting in part.
I agree with the Court's interpretation of 28 U. S. C. § 2254(d)(1) (1994 ed., Supp. III), see ante, at 402-413 (opinion of O'Connor, J.), but disagree with its decision to grant habeas relief in this case.
There is "clearly established Federal law, as determined by [this Court]" that governs petitioner's claim of ineffective assistance of counsel: Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (1984). Thus, we must determine whether the Virginia
Generally, in an ineffective-assistance-of-counsel case where the state court applies Strickland, federal habeas courts can proceed directly to "unreasonable application" review. But, according to the substance of petitioner's argument, this could be one of the rare cases where a state court applied the wrong Supreme Court precedent, and, consequently, reached an incorrect result. Petitioner argues, and the Court agrees, that the Virginia Supreme Court improperly held that Lockhart v. Fretwell, 506 U.S. 364 (1993), "modified or in some way supplanted" the rule set down in Strickland. See ante, at 391. I agree that such a holding would be improper. But the Virginia Supreme Court did not so hold as it did not rely on Lockhart to reach its decision.
Before delving into the evidence presented at the sentencing proceeding, the Virginia Supreme Court stated:
While the first part of this statement refers to Lockhart, the rest of the statement is straight out of Strickland. Indeed, after the initial allusion to Lockhart, the Virginia Supreme Court's analysis explicitly proceeds under Strickland alone.
The question then becomes whether the Virginia Supreme Court's adjudication resulted from an "unreasonable application of" Strickland. In my view, it did not.
I, like the Virginia Supreme Court and the Federal Court of Appeals below, will assume without deciding that counsel's performance fell below an objective standard of reasonableness. As to the prejudice inquiry, I agree with the Court of Appeals that evidence showing that petitioner presented a future danger to society was overwhelming. As that court stated:
sentence,' " 254 Va., at 26, 487 S. E. 2d, at 200 (quoting Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668, 698-699 (1984)); "[w]hat the Supreme Court said in Strickland applies with full force here: `Given the overwhelming aggravating factors, there is no reasonable probability that the omitted evidence would have changed the conclusion that the aggravating circumstances outweighed the mitigating circumstances and, hence, the sentence imposed;' " 254 Va., at 26, 487 S. E. 2d, at 200 (quoting Strickland, supra, at 700); and "[i]n conclusion, employing the language of Strickland, the prisoner `has made no showing that the justice of his sentence was rendered unreliable by a breakdown in the adversary process caused by deficiencies in counsel's assistance. [The prisoner's] sentencing proceeding was not fundamentally unfair,' " 254 Va., at 27, 487 S. E. 2d, at 200 (quoting Strickland, supra, at 700).
Here, there was strong evidence that petitioner would continue to be a danger to society, both in and out of prison. It was not, therefore, unreasonable for the Virginia Supreme Court to decide that a jury would not have been swayed by evidence demonstrating that petitioner had a terrible childhood and a low IQ. See ante, at 395-396. The potential mitigating evidence that may have countered the finding that petitioner was a future danger was testimony that petitioner was not dangerous while in detention. See ante, at 396. But, again, it is not unreasonable to assume that the jury would have viewed this mitigation as unconvincing upon hearing that petitioner set fire to his cell while awaiting trial for the murder at hand and has repeated visions of harming other inmates.
Accordingly, I would hold that habeas relief is barred by 28 U. S. C. § 2254(d) (1994 ed., Supp. III).
Briefs of amici curiae urging affirmance were filed for the State of California et al. by Bill Lockyer, Attorney General of California, David Druliner, Chief Assistant Attorney General, Dane R. Gillette, Senior Assistant Attorney General, and Donald E. De Nicola and Ward A. Campbell, Deputy Attorneys General, joined by the Attorneys General for their respective States as follows: Bill Pryor of Alabama, Bruce M. Botelho of Alaska, Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Ken Salazar of Colorado, John M. Bailey of Connecticut, M. Jane Brady of Delaware, Robert A. Butterworth of Florida, Thurbert E. Baker of Georgia, Alan G. Lance of Idaho, James E. Ryan of Illinois, Carla Stovall of Kansas, Richard P. Ieyoub of Louisiana, J. Joseph Curran, Jr., of Maryland, Thomas F. Reilly of Massachusetts, Michael C. Moore of Mississippi, Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon of Missouri, Joseph P. Mazurek of Montana, Don Stenberg of Nebraska, Frankie Sue Del Papa of Nevada, John J. Farmer, Jr. , of New Jersey, Patricia A. Madrid of New Mexico, Michael E. Easley of North Carolina, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, Betty D. Montgomery of Ohio, W. A. Drew Edmondson of Oklahoma, Hardy Myers of Oregon, D. Michael Fisher of Pennsylvania, Charles M. Condon of South Carolina, Mark Barnett of South Dakota, Paul G. Summers of Tennessee, John Cornyn of Texas, Jan Graham of Utah, Christine O. Gregoire of Washington, and Darrell McGraw, Jr., of West Virginia; and for the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation by Kent S. Scheidegger.
None of these reasons is persuasive. First, even though, as the Court recognizes, the term "unreasonable" is "difficult to define," post, at 410, neither the statute itself nor the Court's explanation of it suggests that AEDPA's "unreasonable application of" has the same meaning as Justice Thomas' "`patently unreasonable' " standard mentioned in his dictum in Wright. 505 U. S., at 291 (quoting Butler v. McKellar, 494 U.S. 407, 422 (1990) (Brennan, J., dissenting)). To the extent the "broader debate" in Wright touched upon the Court's novel distinction today between what is "wrong" and what is "unreasonable," it was in the context of a discussion not about the standard of review habeas courts should use for lawapplication questions, but about whether a rule is "new" or "old" such that Teague `s retroactivity rule would bar habeas relief; Justice Thomas contended that Teague barred habeas "whenever the state courts have interpreted old precedents reasonably, not [as Justice O'Connor suggested] only when they have done so `properly.' " 505 U. S., at 291-292, n. 8. Teague, of course, as Justice O'Connor correctly pointed out, "did not establish a standard of review at all," 505 U. S., at 303-304; rather than instructing a court how to review a claim, it simply asks, in absolute terms, whether a rule was clear at the time of a state-court decision. We thus do not think Wright "confirms" anything about the meaning of § 2254(d)(1), which is, as our division reflects, anything but "clear." Post, at 412.
As for the other bases for the Court's view, the only two specific citations to the legislative history upon which it relies, post, at 408, do no more than beg the question. One merely quotes the language of the statute without elaboration, and the other goes to slightly greater length in stating that state-court judgments must be upheld unless "unreasonable." Neither sheds any light on what the content of the hypothetical category of "decisions" that are wrong but nevertheless not "unreasonable." Finally, while we certainly agree with the Court, post, at 403, that AEDPA wrought substantial changes in habeas law, see supra, at 386; see also, e. g., 28 U. S. C. § 2244(b) (1994 ed., Supp. III) (strictly limiting second or successive petitions); § 2244(d) (1-year statute of limitations for habeas petitions); § 2254(e)(2) (limiting availability of evidentiary hearings on habeas); §§ 2263, 2266 (strict deadlines for habeas court rulings), there is an obvious fallacy in the assumption that because the statute changed pre-existing law in some respects, it must have rendered this specific change here.
"The home was a complete wreck. . . . There were several places on the floor where someone had had a bowel movement. Urine was standing in several places in the bedrooms. There were dirty dishes scattered over the kitchen, and it was impossible to step any place on the kitchen floor where there was no trash. . . . The children were all dirty and none of them had on under-pants. Noah and Lula were so intoxicated, they could not find any clothes for the children, nor were they able to put the clothes on them. . .. The children had to be put in Winslow Hospital, as four of them, by that time, were definitely under the influence of whiskey." App. 528-529.