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July 13, 2010

"Races could test voters' views on death penalty"

The title of this post is the headline of this article from the front-page of today's San Francisco Chronicle.  Here is how it gets started:

For decades, capital punishment was a driving force in California politics, swaying elections for governor and the U.S. Senate and reshaping the state Supreme Court.

While executions in California have been on hold for more than four years, tied up in court challenges to lethal injection procedures that the state is now redrafting, November's elections may determine whether the death penalty still carries political weight.

The contrasts at the top of the major parties' tickets could not be starker.

Democrats Jerry Brown and Kamala Harris, the candidates for governor and attorney general, oppose capital punishment and have acted on their beliefs -- Brown by vetoing a death penalty bill when he was governor in 1977, Harris by refusing to seek death sentences as San Francisco district attorney.

Their Republican opponents, Meg Whitman and Steve Cooley, support capital punishment. So do most Californians, according to Field Poll surveys going back half a century, although the majority has fallen from 83 percent in 1986 to 67 percent in 2006.

July 13, 2010 at 07:06 PM | Permalink

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"Races could test voters' views on death penalty"

I doubt it (other things like no jobs, reckless spending and endless debt will tell the tale), but I sure hope it does.

Let the abolistionists take their case to the people -- and then live with the results, as I would and will.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Jul 13, 2010 7:43:08 PM

It seems simple to me for this issue to be resolved; make mandatory sentencing for crimes to ensure that race cannot be a factor. For example; someone found guilty of violent murder would automatically get 25 years with a chance of parole barring circumstances in 15 years. A first time drunk driver would automatically get 1 year in jail and 1 year probation. The figures tossed out are only an example of what I'm thinking but I don't know why something like this couldn't be enacted.

Posted by: Paul Wall | Jul 15, 2010 2:32:59 AM

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