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November 9, 2016

Fascinating mixed criminal justice initiative results developing in California

Though a little under 40% of all precincts have been reported, the early results on all the criminal justice reform ballot initiatives in California reported here indicate this fascinating mixed bag of criminal justice reform developments:

Proposition 57 reforming "Criminal Sentences & Juvenile Crime Proceedings" is winning 64% to 36%

Proposition 62 "Repeal of Death Penalty" is losing 45% to 55%

Proposition 64 enacting "Marijuana Legalization" is winning 56% to 44%

Proposition 66 providing for "Death Penalty Procedure Time Limits" is winning 51.5% to 48.5%

In other words, the largest state in our Union has voted again against repealing its death penalty and seems to be voting for a competing reform intended to speed up the path of condemned murderers from death row to the execution chamber. At the same time, this state has enacted via initiative yet another significant reform to its non-capital sentencing system that seems likely to further reduce the state's modern heavy reliance on incarceration. And the state with a huge population and a "local" economy that is of truly global significance will now be fully turning away from the criminalization of recreational marijuana use by adults.

November 9, 2016 at 02:20 AM | Permalink


I'm against the death penalty and not supportive of advancing its use.

But, the net result here can be positive, especially given the reality that in California especially the result of the death penalty measure is some tinkering that can might improve the system (did not investigate case) and probably a tiny number of additional actual executions. Not a good thing really, but in the realm of the possible, including on some utilitarian calculus measure, life and liberty hopefully will be advanced.

I respect the professor's sentiments that as a matter of numbers etc. that non-capital cases are more important & in that respect this is a positive development.

Posted by: Joe | Nov 9, 2016 10:56:18 AM

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