Early this morning the Connecticut Senate voted to abolish Connecticut's death penalty. The vote was 19-17. The bill now goes to Governor Jodi Rell (R). She sounds like she will veto the bill. So, if you care about the value of human life and making Connecticut and America more just and ending the barbarism that is the death penalty, this is an important time to spend a few moments to call or email Governor Rell to ask her to sign the bill. The phone is 860.566.4840. The email: Governor.Rell@ct.gov.
Connecticut is not in the "death belt." Never has been. Connecticut has had one execution in the past 48 years. Michael Ross was executed in 2005 only after he withdrew his appeals and "volunteered" for execution, and that decision was fought as far as it could go in the Courts. Regardless, there seems to be strong support for retaining the death penalty in the Connecticut Senate among its Republican members, some Democrats in the Senate crossed over to vote against the abolition measure, and and Governor Rell has repeatedly said that she supports retention of the death penalty.
The Day reports:
The Connecticut Senate voted to abolish the death penalty early Friday morning after a marathon debate, narrowly approving a bill that would make life imprisonment without possibility of release the state’s highest criminal punishment.
The Senate approved the death penalty bill, 19-17, shortly after 4 a.m., after nearly 11 hours of debate. The same measure had previously passed in the House of Representatives, and proceeds to Gov. M. Jodi Rell, who has appeared likely to veto the bill.
If signed into law, the bill would make Connecticut the 16th American state without an active death penalty statute.
The bill almost died in the Senate. "Partisan acrimony virtually derailed the workings of the chamber, as the death penalty bill ran head-on into a deliberate slow-down effort by the Senate’s 12-member Republican minority, prompted by the minority party’s anger at the management of business in the Senate." Put another way, Republicans, even Connecticut Republicans, and some Democrats, even Connecticut Democrats, cling to the barbarism and caprice that is the death penalty. "Republicans filed 26 amendments on the bill, eventually calling five, and finally withdrew their remaining amendments from consideration after securing an agreement from Williams not to force a debate on reform of the state probate courts even later into Friday morning." The final vote was 17 against abolition. That means that 5 Democrats voted against abolition. You might ask what probate reform has to do with state killing.
You'll recall that just recently New Mexico abolished its death penalty when the bill was signed by Governor Richardson. Richardson took the matter seriously, requested input, and ultimately made the correct decision. What about Governor Rell?
Well, yesterday, Governor Rell had this to say:
Meanwhile, Rell reiterated her support for the death penalty Thursday, increasing the likelihood of a veto, which supporters do not have the votes to override.
“You know how I feel about the death penalty,” the governor said. “I’ve always believed there are some crimes that are so heinous it deserves the death penalty.”
And before that she repeatedly supported of state killing. In other words, this doesn't sound good.
Please lend a hand. Please take a moment to email Governor Rell at Governor.Rell@ct.gov or call her office at 860.566.4840 and ask her please to sign the death penalty abolition bill. Do it because it's the right thing to do. Do it because we need to join virtually all of the rest of the world and stop state killing.
Etiquetas: abolition, Connecticut, death penalty, human rights
POSTED BY DAVID SETH MICHAELS AT 1:07 PM