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May 22, 2009

Connecticut Governor pledges to veto death penalty repeal bill

According to this AP story, the effort to repeal the death penalty in Connecticut is going to die on the desk of the state's governor:

Connecticut Gov. Jodi Rell vowed Friday to veto a newly approved bill banning the death penalty as soon as she receives it, saying capital punishment is appropriate for certain heinous crimes.   The measure, approved early Friday by the state Senate and last week by the state House of Representatives, would replace capital punishment with life in prison without the possibility of parole.

At least two-thirds of the members of each chambers would have to vote to override a veto.  But achieving that margin is in doubt, given the tight 19-17 vote in the Democrat-led Senate. The bill passed 90-56 in the House, which also led by Democrats.

Rell, a Republican, said Friday that while she understands the "passionate beliefs of people on both sides" of the debate, she will veto the measure "as soon as it hits my desk." "I also fully understand the anguish and outrage of the families of victims who believe, as I do, that there are certain crimes so heinous, so fundamentally revolting to our humanity , that the death penalty is warranted," she said....

New Jersey and New Mexico are the only states that have abolished the death penalty since the U.S. Supreme Court allowed states to reinstate capital punishment in 1976. Thirty-five states have death penalty laws, although some have not executed a prisoner in decades.

There are 10 men on Connecticut's death row, including three who committed their crimes in the 1980s. The legislation would not retroactively affect their cases.

Several murder victims' relatives gathered at the Capitol on Friday to support the ban, saying state-sanctioned executions of convicted murderers do not compensate for their losses.

May 22, 2009 at 06:22 PM | Permalink


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So when was the last time onn. executed someone? Especially someone who did not withdraw their appeals or even actively fight to force execution?

Unless the state actually intends to carry out executions some times this veto seems like nothing more than an expensive symbolic move.

Posted by: Soronel Haetir | May 22, 2009 6:49:01 PM

Of course signing a death penalty repeal bill, when the death penalty is almost never used, is also almost completely a symbolic move.

Posted by: Bill Otis | May 23, 2009 8:09:57 AM

There is something way more important here. The right of the people to govern themselves. The death penalty is unquestionably constitutional. Yet liberal judges stymie it. Why should the people cave?

Posted by: federalist | May 23, 2009 8:28:21 AM


After 30+ years without a single involuntary execution it cannot all be laid at the feet of liberal judges.

Posted by: Soronel Haetir | May 23, 2009 11:06:37 AM

Yes it can. Look at Connecticut's death row now. Why aren't these cases moving? The judiciary.

Posted by: federalist | May 23, 2009 5:02:58 PM

So much for the much vaunted role of democracy. The dictator rules.

Posted by: peter | May 23, 2009 5:14:21 PM

Cases in Connecticut don't move because no one--not the judges, not the prosecutors, not the defendants, and not the citizens (and, apparently, not the victims, at least in some case)--is interested in moving them.

It is simply not a death penalty state, as evidenced by the votes of its elected legislature. I can only assume the Governor has some future ambitions within the Republican party that she thinks will be compromised by a "soft on crime" act such as signing this bill.

For now, Connecticut goes on with its charade, prolonging the misery for victims, lawyers, defendants, etc.

Posted by: Anon | May 25, 2009 1:55:47 PM

Send them here to Texas, we get it done. A bad guy is a bad guy, take them out of the gene pool. Putting no hope people in prison for life, just endangers Guards and other no real bad guys. I don/t care what my Church and other churches say.

Posted by: Glenn | May 31, 2009 5:03:25 PM

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