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February 27, 2009

Efforts to kill death penalty in Maryland appear to be dying

The latest news out of Maryland would seem to suggest that the Governor's efforts to kill the state's death penalty are proving not so potent.  Here are details from the Baltimore Sun in this blog entry headlined "Death penalty debate could end with fizzle":

Today, the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee rejected a bill that would repeal the death penalty. Like two years ago, the effort failed on a 5-5 tie vote (a majority is needed for passage).

For most legislation, that would be the end of the story. But not this bill. Not this year. Gov. Martin O’Malley has said he would do “everything in my power” to end capital punishment in Maryland this year. He’s calling for a full vote in the Senate, and Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller says that will happen – as soon as next week....

“This is a bill of some importance,” Miller, a death penalty supporter, said this morning before the committee action. “A bill that the public reads about and expects their legislators to take a stand.”  Miller supports the death penalty. And no one knows the thinking of the other 46 members of the Senate better than him.  “I don’t anticipate a long, protracted debate,” Miller said yesterday. “I think I know where the votes will be.” 

That sounds like the Great Death Penalty Debate of ’09 could end wth a fizzle. A Baltimore Sun survey of senators showed that majority want to keep capital punishment.  So after next week the Assembly could put the death penalty behind it for another year, and get back to talking about just how bad the state budget is.

February 27, 2009 at 07:05 PM | Permalink

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Comments

The bill still appears to be headed to the full Senate: http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/local/politics/bal-death-penalty0227,0,1369684.story

Posted by: karl | Feb 27, 2009 9:40:53 PM

Right, karl, but the report quoted above suggests that Senate Prez Miller is letting the bill get to the full Senate because he knows it will be defeated there (again).

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