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January 19, 2011

Ohio Justice and US Senator from Illinois urging end to state use of death penalty

As detailed in new local stories, a sitting Justice of the Ohio Supreme Court and a notable US Senator from the state of Illinois are taking about shutting down the death penalty in states.  The opening paragraphs from each piece provide the basics; consider the start of the Illinois story here appealing in the Chicago Tribune:

States should not impose the death penalty because of the difficulty in administering it fairly, although the federal government should retain that authority in cases involving terrorism or treason that endanger many lives, U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin said.

Durbin told The (Springfield) State Journal-Register that he had always supported the death penalty, but has come to believe that "life in prison is penalty enough."  He said that view was influenced partly by those of the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackmun and retired Justice John Paul Stevens.

And this is the start from the Ohio story here:

An Ohio Supreme Court justice who helped write the state's death penalty law three decades ago and has more recently questioned its interpretation called Tuesday for an end to capital punishment in the state.  Justice Paul Pfeifer also said Gov. John Kasich and any future governor should consider commuting the sentences of Ohio's death row inmates to life without parole.

"These are important matters that need all of our thoughtful attention — need the attention of the Legislature to consider seriously whether we're well-served by this statute any longer," he said in remarks following his swearing-in ceremony.  "The time has come for us to make that change," Pfeifer said.

Pfeifer, a moderate Republican, was chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee as Ohio debated the capital punishment bill that became law in 1981.

January 19, 2011 at 11:28 AM | Permalink

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Comments

A twit judge and a disloyal Democrat--yeah, let's listen to those guys.

Posted by: federalist | Jan 20, 2011 9:22:00 PM

Thank you very much for keeping me up to date.

Posted by: Health Blog | Jan 26, 2011 8:02:10 AM

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