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Democrats' Platform to Call for Death Penalty Abolition
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Thread: Democrats' Platform to Call for Death Penalty Abolition

  1. #1
    Senior Member CnCP Legend Mike's Avatar
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    Democrats' Platform to Call for Death Penalty Abolition

    In a First, Democrats' Platform to Call for Death Penalty Abolition

    The words of Bill and Hillary Clinton during their respective presidential campaigns 24 years apart illustrate the decline in both the support and use of the death penalty in America a shift expected to result in the Democrats becoming the first major U.S. political party to formally call for the abolition of capital punishment later this month.

    More than two decades later, Hillary Clinton has expressed ambivalence on the campaign trail when asked about capital punishment. "States have proven themselves incapable of carrying out fair trials" in death penalty cases, she said in March during a campaign appearance in Ohio, while leaving open the possibility of capital punishment under federal law, in a case investigated and prosecuted by the U.S. Department of Justice.

    But her campaign has agreed to a provision in the Democratic Party platform, which is expected to be adopted at the party's national convention in Philadelphia beginning July 25, that says, "We will abolish the death penalty, which has proven to be a cruel and unusual form of punishment. It has no place in the United States of America."

    The landmark language is the latest illustration of a slow but major shift in American politics.

    In calling for the abolition of the death penalty in the platform, Democrats are out in front of both public opinion and the leaders of their party.

    Both Gallup and Pew polls last year showed a majority of Americans (56 percent in the Pew survey, 61 percent in Gallup's) still support death sentences, although that is a marked decline from 1994, when 80 percent of Americans told Gallup they supported capital punishment.

    And neither President Barack Obama nor Hillary Clinton have formally called for an end of the death penalty, though both have been critical about how it has been administered. Those positions are in some ways similar to the caution they exhibited before embracing same-sex marriage.

    The inclusion of the death penalty plank in the platform was a victory for allies of Bernie Sanders, who opposes death sentences. (In a statement, Maya Harris, a top Clinton aide who is heavily involved in the platform process, called the overall platform "the most ambitious and progressive" every adopted by Democrats. Her list of achievements, which included measures like calling for a $15 minimum wage, did not refer to the death penalty provision.)

    Obama, in an one-on-one interview on criminal justices issues with Keller last year, said he did not oppose the death penalty "in theory," but said he had "very significant reservations" about its use in the United States, arguing it was "inefficient" and suffered from "racial bias."

    Despite the push by Democrats to abolish the death penalty, key Republicans still largely favor capital punishment. The GOP's 2012 platform stated that "courts should have the option of imposing the death penalty in capital murder cases." It is not expected that language will be dramatically changed at the party's convention in Cleveland later this month.

    In December, Donald Trump said that if he were elected president, he would issue an executive order urging the death penalty any time a police officer is killed.

    http://www.nbcnews.com/meet-the-pres...lition-n605946
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  2. #2
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    No doubt they plan to call for an abolition. They have the nutcase Stephen Breyer, The nearly embalmed Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor, who are insane leftists. I don't have enough info on the last two, but Breyer has gone on record as saying the US Constitution should be subject to "International standards". Meanwhile, Ginsburg has threatened to move to Europe if Trump is elected. Way to go, Ruth. Very mature. Go ahead, we don't need you. It's a given what we're going to get if Hillary is elected. Pro-Death Penalty Democrats, this is what you are trying to elect. Recognize your common sense and vote for the man who will select common sense justices, and not wacko freaks.

  3. #3
    Senior Member CnCP Legend Mike's Avatar
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    Tim Kaine’s Anti-Death Penalty Crusade

    As a young lawyer, Tim Kaine defended the most indefensible crimes not because he wanted to, but because he felt he must.

    Richard Lee Whitley needed a lawyer.

    The Northern Virginia handyman had confessed to murdering a neighbor and then sexually assaulting her with umbrellas, and the volunteer lawyer handling his case had just moved out of state. It was 1983, the Supreme Court’s suspension of the death penalty had just ended, and Whitley faced death row.

    Enter Tim Kaine. The attorney had only been out of law school for a few months, and had just moved to Richmond. A devout Catholic, he’d already developed a reputation as a committed opponent of the death penalty, so when Whitley’s representation problems made his execution more likely, Kaine’s name came up as someone who might help.

    And after hesitating, he took the client.

    Over the course of his career, Kaine didn’t just oppose the death penalty; he worked to prevent executions by representing men facing death because they committed murders. His dogged opposition to the death penalty presents a stark contrast with Donald Trump’s stance on the issue, but it also differentiates him from his own running mate, Hillary Clinton.

    The death penalty is not a top political issue this cycle. At all.

    Americans are much more concerned about, well, just about anything else—especially the economy and terrorism.

    But in Philadelphia last month, Democratic National Convention delegates voted to officially back its abolition in their platform. It was not only historic—but it was also more in line with their nominee’s running mate than Clinton herself. The former secretary of state has long refused to completely rule out its use, and as recently as March cited the 9/11 attacks as potentially justifying it.

    So for Clinton, it’s complicated. But for Kaine, it’s not.


    Since his first days as a lawyer, Kaine has put in hundreds of hours, for free, to get murderers off death row. His first, formative case was Whitley’s, who confessed to slashing the throat of a 63-year-old woman living in his Fairfax County neighborhood and then using two umbrellas to sexually assault her.

    Whitley’s lawyer quit during the sentencing process, Kaine had only been practicing law for six months. But he was plugged in to Richmond’s anti-death penalty circles, and the Virginia Coalition of Jails and Prisons—which shared office space with the state’s chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union—recommended he represent Whitley, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

    “I think it’s outrageous that there is the death penalty,” he said, according to the Times-Dispatch. “It’s not the biggest outrage in the world, but it’s one of a number of outrageous (things) where people don’t appropriately value the sanctity of human life.

    “Tim Kaine says that Adolf Hitler doesn’t qualify for the death penalty,” the narrator said.

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/article...y-crusade.html
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    Senior Member CnCP Legend Mike's Avatar
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    Hillary on State Power to Kill: “I Do Not Favor Abolishing Death Penalty”

    Hillary Clinton attended a breakfast campaign event Wednesday in New Hampshire, hoping to discuss the purported benefits of the Import-Export bank in the context of aid to American small businesses. Her conversation was derailed when a reporter pressed Mrs. Clinton on the issue of the death penalty. While Clinton was careful to craft her response in order to give nominal lip service to the Bernie Sanders supporters and anti-death penalty activists that are tentatively part of her electoral coalition, she gave a clear answer that she is in fact in favor of keeping the death penalty as a viable option. The New York Times reports:

    “We have a lot of evidence now that the death penalty has been too frequently applied, and too often in a discriminatory way. So I think we have to take a hard look at it … I do not favor abolishing it, however, because I do think there are certain egregious cases that still deserve the consideration of the death penalty, but I’d like to see those be very limited and rare, as opposed to what we’ve seen in most states.”

    http://thelibertarianrepublic.com/hi...-penalty-kill/
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