Id. See also Nobles v. Johnson, 127 F.3d 409, 423 (5th Circuit 1997) (in accord). We further noted that Section 4, the provision at issue here, adopts the same rule for non-capital felony cases(2).
See Morris, 186 F.3d at 584 ("In this appeal, [the petitioner] argues that the state court's unreasonable instruction led to his conviction under a standard contrary to settled federal law"); Corwin, 150 F.3d at 472 ("Corwin argues that . . . all state court determinations of federal constitutional issues in habeas proceedings should be subject to de novo review by the federal courts"). In Nobles v. Johnson, 127 F.3d 409 (5th Cir. 1997), on which Morris relies for the "full and fair adjudication" proposition, we evinced concern that the state court had not adequately adjudicated the petitioner's claim. While we stated our concern, we resolved the petitioner's claim on other grounds and did not delve further into the possible import of the way in which the state habeas court adjudicated the petitioner's claim.
That statute alters the standards and scope of our review in habeas corpus petitions filed after AEDPA's effective date. See Nobles v. Johnson, 127 F.3d 409, 415 (5th Cir. 1997) (applying AEDPA standards to a habeas petition filed after AEDPA's effective date of April 24, 1996). Applying these statutory amendments to 28 U.S.C. § 2254(d)(1) , we can grant a writ of habeas corpus only if the state court's determination of law, on a de novo review, violated Supreme Court precedent in existence at the time of the petitioner's conviction.
Both arguments prove unavailing.Little has procedurally defaulted on his first due process theory. When the ground upon which the petitioner relies for habeas relief was not exhausted in state court and state procedural rules would bar subsequent presentation of the argument, this court may not consider the claim absent "cause" and "prejudice", neither of which exceptions is argued here.SeeMuniz v. Johnson, 132 F.3d 214, 221 (5th Cir. 1998);Nobles v. Johnson, 127 F.3d 409, 422-23 (5th Cir. 1997). The issue of reliability of Thomas's confession was not raised at trial.
An application of federal law is "unreasonable" only if it is "so clearly incorrect that it would not be debatable among reasonable jurists." Nobles v. Johnson, 127 F.3d 409, 418 (5th Cir. 1997), cert. denied, 118 S. Ct. 1845, 140 L.Ed.2d 1094 (1998) (internal quotations and citation omitted).