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Pfizer Bars Use Of Its Drugs In Capital Punishment


Pfizer has become the latest drug maker from barring its products from being used in executions.

Connecticut Supreme Court Declares Death Penalty Unconstitutional

Death Chamber

Connecticut eliminated the death penalty several years ago, and now the state’s Supreme Court has ruled that the men remaining on death row cannot be executed.

Supreme Court Rejects Challenge To Death Penalty

Death Chamber

The Supreme Court rejected a challenge to the way the death penalty is administered, dealing a serious blow to opponents of the death penalty.

Nebraska Repeals The Death Penalty

Death Chamber

Despite a veto from the state’s Governor, today Nebraska became the latest state to repeal the death penalty. Hopefully, others will follow.

Nebraska Could Be The Next State To Repeal The Death Penalty


The largely conservative state of Nebraska seems to be on the verge of repealing its law authorizing capital punishment.

Pennsylvania Governor Imposes Moratorium On Death Penalty

Death Chamber

Reflecting a growing national trend away from the barbarity of capital punishment, the Governor of Pennsylvania has imposed a moratorium on executions in the Keystone State.

Majority Supports Life Without Parole Over Death Penalty For Murder

Death Chamber

A turning point in public opinion?

Tennessee Brings Back The Electric Chair

Electric Chair

Tennessee makes an unfortunate return to the past.

The Death Penalty Has Resulted In The Death Of Innocent People


Innocent men have been put to death on the orders of the state.

There’s No Evidence The Death Penalty Deters Crime

Death Chamber

There is no evidence that the Capital Punishment works.

Despite Controversy And Doubt, Troy Davis Was Executed In Georgia Last Night


The execution of Troy Davis brings back to the forefront the reasons why the death penalty is inherently flawed.

Cheering For Death At The Reagan Library Debate


There was a somewhat disturbing moment during last night’s GOP Debate.

Texas Executed An Innocent Man


The Chicago Tribune reports that a fire science expert retained by the State of Texas has concluded that there was no evidence of Arson in the December 1991 fire that killed Cameron Todd Willingham’s three children. Willingham was convicted of murder and was executed in 2004. In a withering critique, a nationally known fire scientist […]

We Don’t Have a Justice System…


…we have a legal system, and to the extent that it delivers a just outcome is not something inherent in the system. To see why this is so, read this rather distubring article by Radley Balko over at Reason.com. Be advised the accompanying video and pictures are graphic and not pleasant. Here is a teaser, […]

Anthrax Suspect Commits Suicide


Via the LAT: Apparent suicide in anthrax case A top government scientist who helped the FBI analyze samples from the 2001 anthrax attacks has died in Maryland from an apparent suicide, just as the Justice Department was about to file criminal charges against him for the attacks, the Los Angeles Times has learned. Bruce E. […]

Obama Plunges in Newsweek Poll!

Barack Obama Polls Down

Newsweek has released a new poll and is excited by the huge change: “Glow Fading? The latest NEWSWEEK Poll shows Barack Obama leading John McCain by only 3 points. What a difference a few weeks can make.” This is quite amusing in that pretty much everyone agreed that the June 20th Newsweek poll was an […]

Supreme Court Made Supreme Error in Child Rape Decision

Justice Anthony Kennedy

A WaPo editorial takes the Supreme Court to task for a significant error in a recent decision: There was quite a goof in the court’s 5 to 4 decision on June 25 banning the death penalty for those who rape children. The majority determined that capital punishment for child rape was unconstitutional, in part because […]

Supreme Court Focus of 2008 Election

The Roberts Court

The NYT editorial board want you to know that they’re very disappointed in the Roberts Court, particularly its upholding of Indiana’s law requiring would-be voters to be able they are who they claim to be, allowing Kentucky to continue using lethal injection for convicted murderers who’ve exhausted seventeen years of appeals, and its ruling that […]

I Miss Karl Rove


Remember the good old days when everyday events were coordinated by Karl Rove? Today could have counted as one but, alas, Karl Rove is nowhere to be found. Child rapists can’t be executed, Supreme Court rules The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 Wednesday that child rapists cannot be executed, concluding that capital punishment for crimes […]

SCOTUS Bans Death Penalty for Child Rape


The Supreme Court has ruled that raping a child is not sufficiently heinous a crime to warrant capital punishment. The Supreme Court on Wednesday outlawed executions of people convicted of raping a child. In a 5-4 vote, the court said the Louisiana law allowing the death penalty to be imposed in such cases violates the […]

Supreme Court: Gitmo Detainees Have Habeus Rights


Terrorist suspects detained at Guantánamo Bay (and presumably, anyplace else under American jurisdiction) have the right to file habeus corpus petitions in U.S. civilian courts the Supreme Court ruled today in a 5-4 decision. Further, Congress could not pass a law waiving these protections absent rebellion or invasion. Justices Rule Terror Suspects Can Appeal in […]

McCain’s Vice Presidential Candidates

McCain Vice President Search

John McCain is vetting potential vice presidential candidates over the holiday weekend, Adam Nagourney reports for the NYT. Gov. Charlie Crist of Florida, Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts and a one-time rival for the Republican nomination, have all accepted invitations to visit with Mr. McCain at his […]

Obama Personality Cult Redux

Obama Personality Cult Redux

Sara Robinson has an interesting examination of the question of Barack Obama’s cult of personality. She begins by a look at the literature on actual cults and shows why the Obama campaign doesn’t qualify. While worthwhile from a technical standpoint, though, that’s not really what the debate is about. Perhaps “cult” is a poor word […]

Clinton: Obama Not Barbaric Enough


In the heated campaigning between Iowa and New Hampshire, the Clinton campaign has started to up the attacks on Barack Obama’s record. One of the more recent is the Clinton campaign’s complaint that Obama favors defendant’s rights and opposes mandatory minimums. Hillary’s aides point to Obama’s extremely progressive record as a community organizer, state senator […]

Huckabee Criticizes Romney For Lack of Executions in Massachusetts


Steve Benen mentions an interesting tidbit about the anti-Romney ad that Mike Huckabee doesn’t have the money to run on TV “refuses to run on principle”. Apparently, the ad criticizes Mitt Romney for the lack of executions in Massachusetts during Romney’s gubernatorial terms. As Benen points out: Apparently, Huckabee — you know, the evangelical, pro-life […]

OTB Radio – Tonight at 7 Eastern (Updated)

The next episode of OTB Radio, our BlogTalkRadio program, will record and air live tonight from 7-8 Eastern. Dave Schuler will be guest hosting tonight, although I may well wind up taking part as well if we don’t find another guest. The topics are up in the air, although TIME’s selection of Vladimir Putin as […]

Sudan Pardons Teddy Bear Teacher

Mohammed Teddy Bear

Gillian Gibbons, who was facing the death penalty for allowing school kids to name a teddy bear Mohammed, has been pardoned by Sudan’s president after the intervention of the British government. A British woman jailed in Sudan for insulting religion was to be released on Monday after being granted a presidential pardon for insulting religion […]

Tennessee Cigarette Police State


Tennessee revenuers are waiting at the borders to arrest people with cigarettes. Starting [Thursday], state Department of Revenue agents will begin stopping Tennessee motorists spotted buying large quantities of cigarettes in border states, then charging them with a crime and, in some cases, seizing their cars. Critics say the new “cigarette surveillance program” amounts to […]

Key Patriot Act Provisions Ruled Unconstitutional


A federal judge has ruled parts of the Patriot Act which give the executive enhanced powers to conduct surveillance and searches of terrorism suspects unconstitutional. Dan Eggen for WaPo: A federal judge in Oregon ruled yesterday that two provisions of the USA Patriot Act are unconstitutional, marking the second time in as many weeks that […]

Gonzales Could Become Chief Executioner


Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is about to be

Kennth Foster Innocent of Murder; Still Going to Be Executed


Kenneth Foster is innocent of murder. Even the State acknoledges this fact, but in three weeks Foster will be executed for the murder of Michael LaHood. Consider this another installment of “Our Stupid Judicial System” LaHood’s actual killer, Mauriceo Brown, was executed in 2006. Foster, who was in a car about 100 yards from the […]

Scammers Target Google Ads


Over the past couple of weeks, I have had pop-up ads minimize my browser window and tell me that my computer was infected and urging me to run a virus scanning program I didn’t have. There are several variations, but I captured this one over the weekend: This has happened to me maybe five or […]

Unnecessary Scandal

Charles Krauthammer argues that Attorney General Alberto Gonzales should resign or be fired sooner rather than later for his handling of the U.S. Attorney firing mess. It’s not a question of probity, but of competence. Gonzales has allowed a scandal to be created where there was none. That is quite an achievement. He had a […]

Execution Procedures in Florida, California Questioned


The methods used to execute condemned criminals in California and Florida are under scrutiny. Gov. Jeb Bush suspended all executions in Florida after a medical examiner said Friday that prison officials botched the insertion of the needles when a convicted killer was put to death earlier this week. Separately, a federal judge in California imposed […]

Saddam Hussein Gets Death Penalty, News at 11


To virtually nobody’s surprise, the first trial of Saddam Hussein on war crimes charges has ended in a guilty verdict: Saddam Hussein was convicted and sentenced Sunday to death by hanging for war crimes in the 1982 killings of 148 people in the town of Dujail, as the former leader, trembling, shouted “God is great!” […]

Bush Considers Weakening War Crimes Act


The Bush administration is considering li The Bush administration has drafted amendments to a war crimes law that would eliminate the risk of prosecution for political appointees, CIA officers and former military personnel for humiliating or degrading war prisoners, according to U.S. officials and a copy of the amendments. Officials say the amendments would alter […]

Anthony Kennedy Now Supreme Court Decider


When it comes to who serves as Secretary of Defense, George W. Bush is the decider. When it comes to close votes on the Supreme Court, that distinction belongs to Anthony Kennedy, who has taken Sandra Day O’Connor’s place as the key swing vote. The Supreme Court’s just-concluded 2005-2006 term was a historic one, in […]

Supremes Uphold Kansas Death Penalty Statute


The Supreme Court today upheld Kansas’ death penalty law, affirming that states have substantial latitude in determining how to apply capital punishment. New Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito broke a tie Monday to rule that Kansas’ death penalty law is constitutional. By a 5-to-4 vote, the justices said the Kansas Supreme Court incorrectly interpreted the […]

D.C. Sniper Given Six Life Sentences


John Allen Muhammad, the D.C. sniper, has been sentenced to six life terms by a Maryland judge. John Allen Muhammad, convicted of carrying out a series of sniper killings in the Washington area, Thursday was sentenced to six life-in-prison terms. Montgomery County (Md.) District Court Judge James L. Ryan also said Muhammad would never be […]

Moussaoui Came Within One Vote of Death


Zacarias Moussaoui would be under death sentence were it not for one juror, who refused to reveal himself to his fellow jurors or present any arguments to sway them. Only one juror stood between the death penalty and Zacarias Moussaoui and that juror frustrated his colleagues because he never explained his vote, according to the […]

Moussaoui Spared Death Penalty


An Alexandria, Virginia jury has decided that Zacarias Moussaoui does not deserve the death penalty for his role in the 9/11 bombings that killed nearly 3000 people. A federal jury decided Wednesday al-Qaida conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui deserves life in prison for his role in the deadliest terrorist attack in U.S. history, on Sept. 11, 2001. […]

Abdul Rahman Safe in Italy


Abdul Rahman, who disappeared immediately after his release from an Afghan prison yesterday, is safe and welcome in Italy. Italy granted asylum Wednesday to an Afghan who faced the death penalty for converting from Islam to Christianity, and Premier Silvio Berlusconi said the man was in the care of the Interior Ministry after arriving in […]

Judge Halts Moussaoui Trial after TSA Leaks


U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema ordered a halt to the death penalty case against confessed al-Qaida conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui while she considers whether to throw the case out entirely. According to the AP report, Brinkema said a lawyer for the Transportation Security Administration sent e-mail to seven Federal Aviation Administration officials outlining the prosecution’s opening […]

Alito Splits With Conservatives on Death Row Appeal


Justice Samuel Alito’s first official act will have conservatives scratching their heads. New Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito split with the court’s conservatives Wednesday night, refusing to let Missouri execute a death-row inmate contesting lethal injection. Alito, handling his first case, sided with inmate Michael Taylor, who had won a stay from an appeals court […]

Rhetorical Appropriation


On the whole, I like reading Michelle Malkin’s blog.  I more often than not agree with her posts.  Of course, she also tends to suffer from partisan blinders and fails to point out similar faults with conservatives, although not all the time.  However, in reading this post about the plight of Haleigh Poutre there is […]

Schwarzenegger Name Taken Off Graz Stadium


Richard Bernstein reports that the officials in Graz, Austria have taken Arnold Schwarzenegger’s name off their sports stadium after a dispute over the death penalty. Hometown Snubs Schwarzenegger Over Death Penalty (NYT) For years the quaint Austrian town of Graz trumpeted its special relationship with its outsize native son, Arnold Schwarzenegger. Born in a village […]

Schwarzenegger to Hometown: Remove My Name

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is in a rather nasty dispute with his childhood hometown, Graz, Austria. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Monday told officials in his hometown in Austria to remove his name from a sports stadium and stop using his identity to promote the city. The governor’s request came after politicians in Graz began a […]

Cory Maye, Tookie Williams and the Death Penalty

There’s quite a bit of thoughtful discussion–as opposed to knee jerk reactions–out there on the execution last night of Crips founder “Tookie” Williams. Conservative Ed Morrissey explains why he’s opposed to capital punishment even in case like Williams’ but publishes an interesting letter from a prosecutor explaining why the added deterrent is needed. A snippet: […]

The Fate of Saddam Hussein?

Kurds anticipate dictator’s execution In what should win an award for the most honest headline of 2005, the Washington Times reports on the view from the third of Iraq few news reports come from these days, Kurdistan. Then again, I could argue that Kurdistan hasn’t been part of Iraq proper for years, but that would […]

Iraqis Uncover Terrorist Plot Targetting Saddam Trial


The Iraqi government has thwarted a terrorist plot against Saddam Hussein’s trial and that an assassination attempt against former Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi failed. Plot to Rocket Saddam Trial Uncovered (AP) Iraq’s national security adviser said Sunday that authorities uncovered a plot by a Sunni Arab insurgent group to fire rockets at the court […]

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