Differences By Race And Ethnicity Education Over Whether There Are Racial Disparities In Death Penalty Sentencing
There are substantial demographic differences in views of whether death sentencing is applied fairly across racial groups. While 85% of Black adults say Black people are more likely than White people to be sentenced to death for committing similar crimes, a narrower majority of Hispanic adults and about half of White adults say the same. People with four-year college degrees also are more likely than those who have not completed college to say that Black people and White people are treated differently when it comes to the death penalty.
About eight-in-ten Democrats , including fully 94% of liberal Democrats and three-quarters of conservative and moderate Democrats, say Black people are more likely than White people to be sentenced to death for committing the same type of crime – a view shared by just 25% of Republicans .
Across educational and racial or ethnic groups, majorities say that the death penalty does not deter serious crimes, although there are differences in how widely this view is held. About seven-in-ten of those with college degrees say this, as do about six-in-ten of those without college degrees. About seven-in-ten Black adults and narrower majorities of White and Hispanic adults say the same. Asian American adults are more divided, with half saying the death penalty deters serious crimes and a similar share saying it does not.
Why Does The Republican Party Support The Death Penalty And Oppose Abortion The Reason Is Economics Not Ethics
The recent experience with the novel coronavirus and the economic effects of the shutdown gives us all an opportunity to calculate how much the pro-life party values life. Approximately 30 million Americans lost their jobs because of the coronavirus pandemic. The shutdown if continued through the phased reopening without being rushed will save perhaps 1 million American lives. It follows that to the politicians who wished to end the shutdown in the early summer, one life to them is worth not more than about 30 jobs. It also explains the Republican fascination with the death penalty. If the average death penalty case costs about $100,000 to try, which we can evaluate as equal to roughly 2 jobs for a year, but if only one out of every 40 people convicted of a death penalty crime is actually executed, then each execution produces roughly 80 jobs, a very decent return on investment from this coldly capitalist point of view.
Americans Are Divided On Federal Executions Why Is The Trump Administration Bringing Them Back
The Trump administration’s decision to reinstate the federal death penalty, beginning with the executions of five men later this year, highlights a growing partisan divide over capital punishment at a time when its use has been decreasing. Polls show a strong majority of Republicans support the death penalty, while a majority of Democrats do not.
The expected executions, scheduled for this winter, would be the first time the federal government has executed anyone in 16 years — a time period that encompasses both Democratic and Republican administrations.
“The Justice Department upholds the rule of law — and we owe it to the victims and their families to carry forward the sentence imposed by our justice system,” Attorney General William Barr said about the move in a press release on Thursday.
But many see the use of the death penalty, at the federal level in particular, as arbitrary in terms of who ultimately faces that punishment — a sentiment that has affected its public support, said Robert Dunham, director for the Death Penalty Information Center.
The change also comes as the Justice Department shifts policy on what chemical it will use to kill the men, a topic of public and legal debate around the use of lethal injection drugs.
Over the last two decades, capital punishment has fallen overall, and at the state level especially, Dunham said. Nearly two dozen states have abolished the death penalty, and public opinion supporting executions has followed that slump.
Statewide Poll On Death Penalty Reveals Ohio Voters Are Ready To End Capital Punishment
COLUMBUS—Today the ACLU of Ohio and Ohioans to Stop Executions released a statewide public opinion poll of voters’ views on capital punishment, and the results show that a strong majority of Ohioans support repealing the death penalty. Key findings include:
- 59% support replacing the death penalty with life in prison without the possibility of parole. About half stronglysupport
- 59% of households with a member employed in criminal justice are supportive of a death penalty repeal.
- 54% of respondents chose a life sentence instead of the death penalty when asked what punishment is preferred for 1st degree murder.
- 69% of Democrats and 53% of Republicans support death penalty repeal, highlighting the bipartisan nature of this issue.
“The momentum to repeal the death penalty is at an all-time high. Just last month, Ohio lawmakers passed a bill that exempts individuals with a serious mental illness from receiving a death sentence. This development has sparked more conversations about how Ohio can build a more equitable criminal legal system. Furthermore, we know the death penalty is not an effective response to violence, and that it won’t prevent future violence or heal past violence,” noted Hannah Kubbins, Executive Director for OTSE.
“Public opinion is changing with regard to foundational issues like the death penalty and we should not be surprised that this is happening in Ohio as well,” noted Brian Tringali, Partner at The Tarrance Group.
Read the one-pager below.
Republicans Want To Kill The Death Penalty Because Executing People Is Too Expensive
Republican lawmakers are increasingly trying to repeal the death penalty in GOP-held states amid concerns over botched procedures and the high costs associated with long appeals and wrongful convictions, a new report shows.
In the last five years, there has been a significant increase in the number of Republican sponsors of repeal legislation with dozens of Republican lawmakers supporting death penalty repeal bills in 2016 and 2017, according to the report by Conservatives Concerned About the Death Penalty.
The review indicates that 10 times more GOP legislators moved for repeal compared to 2000, rejecting a long-held Republican belief that support for the death penalty is a “tough on crime” pillar of the GOP establishment.
Politics And The Death Penalty: For Clinton And Trump Safest Stance May Be Silence
Neither candidate seems keen to take on the controversial topic of capital punishment in the 2016 election, despite waning public support for it
Last modified on Fri 9 Feb 2018 19.08 GMT
Donald J Trump phoned in to Fox & Friends in May 2015, shortly after two police officers were shot dead in Mississippi.
Presenter Steve Doocy wanted to know what an appropriate punishment for the killers would be.
“Well, it’s the death penalty,” Trump said airily. “We have people who are, these two, animals who shot the cops … the death penalty, it should be brought back and it should be brought back strong.”
A month later, Trump announced he was running for president. He has barely said the words “death penalty” in public since, although a top adviser has , saying she “should be put in the firing line and shot for treason”.
Clinton only talks about capital punishment when pressed and then, clumsily. Unlike most of her own party – including running mate Tim Kaine – the Democrat supports death in the case of terrorists. She has said she would be happy if someone would outlaw execution. Someone else.
In campaign 2016, the safest stance on the ultimate punishment may be silence. Both candidates need to woo disaffected members of the other’s party. Neither can afford to lose their own loyal base.
“Why bring it up if it’s going to stir the pot if you don’t have to?” said Sherry Bebitch Jeffe, senior fellow at the University of Southern California’s Sol Price School of Public Policy.
The Federal Governments Enthusiasm For Executions Is At Odds With Many Republican
PENTOBARBITAL IS due to be injected into Daniel Lee, a white supremacist convicted of a triple murder, on the morning of July 13th. The drug, administered at a federal prison in Indiana, is supposed first to make him unconscious, then stop his heart or prevent breathing. This week the Supreme Court declined to take up a case that might have stopped his death. Instead, barring late legal challenges, his will be the first execution carried out under federal authority in 17 years. It comes a year after William Barr, the attorney-general, ordered them to resume. Three more, all of murderers, are set for the summer.
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What will the federal executions achieve? Donald Trump has long yearned for more use of capital punishment. Late in June the president told an interviewer he is “totally in favour of the death penalty”. On Twitter he calls himself a “law and order” leader. His base of supporters should cheer. Among older Republicans a big majority long shared his views: a Pew survey from two years ago found that 81% of 50-64 year-olds supported its use, as did 78% who were 65 or older.
This article appeared in the United States section of the print edition under the headline “Cruel, unusual and costly”
States With The Death Penalty Death Penalty Bans And Death Penalty Moratoriums
|24||States Have the Death Penalty|
|Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Wyoming|
|3||States Have a Moratorium on the Death Penalty|
|California, Oregon, Pennsylvania|
|23||States and DC Have Abolished the Death Penalty|
|Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, DC, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin|
History of Death Penalty Laws by State
The June 29, 1972 Furman v. Georgia Supreme Court ruling placed a de facto moratorium on the death penalty in the United States. Many states amended their laws to comply with the mandates of the Furman decision and reinstate capital punishment after the 1972 ruling.
Pew Resource Center 2015 Poll On Political Affiliation And The Death Penalty
A 2015 national poll by the Pew Resource Center reported declining support for the death penalty in the United States across virtually all demographic groups, with the drop in support especially pronounced among Democrats. Pew Resource Center, Less Support for Death Penalty, Especially Among Democrats . Pew reported significant drops in support for the death penalty among all political affiliations between 1995 and 2015 , with declines of 31 and 22 percentage points among Democrats and Independents, respectively, and a 10 percentage-point drop in support for the death penalty among Republicans. As of March 2015, 77% of Republicans, 57% of Independents, and 40% of Democrats said they favored the death penalty. 17% of Republicans, 37% of Independents, and 56% of Democrats said they opposed capital punishment.
From November 2011 to March 2015, Pew reported significant declines in support for the death penalty among Democrats and Independents , and a slight decline among Republicans as a whole . However, support for the death penalty among those who identified themself as conservative Republicans fell 7 percentage points during this period, matching the drop for Independents and for those who identified themselves as conservative/moderate Democrats. Support for the death penalty among liberal Democrats fell by 11 percentage points over this period.
—Robert Dunham, Executive Director, DPIC
Overwhelming Share Of Death Penalty Supporters Say It Is Morally Justified
Those who favor the death penalty consistently express more favorable attitudes regarding specific aspects of the death penalty than those who oppose it.
For instance, nine-in-ten of those who favor the death penalty also say that the death penalty is morally justified when someone commits a crime like murder. Just 25% of those who oppose the death penalty say it is morally justified.
This relationship holds among members of each party. Among Republicans and Republican leaners who favor the death penalty, 94% say it is morally justified; 86% of Democrats and Democratic leaners who favor the death penalty also say this.
Similarly, those who favor the death penalty are more likely to say it deters people from committing serious crimes. Half of those who favor the death penalty say this, compared with 13% of those who oppose it. And even though large majorities of both groups say there is some risk an innocent person will be put to death, members of the public who favor the death penalty are 24 percentage points more likely to say that there are adequate safeguards to prevent this than Americans who oppose the death penalty.
CORRECTION : The following sentence was updated to reflect the correct timespan: “Last year, in part because of the coronavirus outbreak, fewer people were executed than in any year in nearly three decades.” The changes did not affect the report’s substantive findings.
Differing Views Of Death Penalty By Race And Ethnicity Education Ideology
There are wide ideological differences within both parties on this issue. Among Democrats, a 55% majority of conservatives and moderates favor the death penalty, a position held by just 36% of liberal Democrats . A third of liberal Democrats strongly oppose the death penalty, compared with just 14% of conservatives and moderates.
While conservative Republicans are more likely to express support for the death penalty than moderate and liberal Republicans, clear majorities of both groups favor the death penalty .
As in the past, support for the death penalty differs across racial and ethnic groups. Majorities of White , Asian and Hispanic adults favor the death penalty for persons convicted of murder. Black adults are evenly divided: 49% favor the death penalty, while an identical share oppose it.
Support for the death penalty also varies across age groups. About half of those ages 18 to 29 favor the death penalty, compared with about six-in-ten adults ages 30 to 49 and those 65 and older . Adults ages 50 to 64 are most supportive of the death penalty, with 69% in favor.
There are differences in attitudes by education, as well. Nearly seven-in-ten adults who have not attended college favor the death penalty, as do 63% of those who have some college experience but no degree.
Felony Voting Laws Are Confusing; Activists Would Ditch Them Altogether
Only two states, Maine and Vermont, have no restrictions on voting rights for felons. In the rest, it’s complicated.
Although as many as three-quarters of the nation’s Republicans still support the death penalty, according to polls, GOP lawmakers are increasingly aligning with Democrats to oppose capital punishment.
In New Hampshire, dozens of Republicans, including Danielson, voted in March for a death penalty repeal bill in the Democratic-led state House of Representatives. The state Senate, also controlled by Democrats, is widely expected to duplicate the House in ultimately passing House Bill 455 by a veto-proof margin.
Repeal bills with Republican sponsors have been introduced in at least seven other states this year. In solidly red Wyoming, a bipartisan repeal bill advanced well beyond expectations in the Republican-controlled legislature, passing the full House and a Senate committee before being killed by the full Senate.
A major factor behind changing public attitudes on the death penalty — including the shift among Republicans — stems from law enforcement advances and DNA science that have cleared wrongly convicted defendants, including 164 death row inmates who had been awaiting executions in 28 states.
Questions involving racial disparities and other issues have left Americans almost evenly split over whether the death penalty is being fairly applied, according to a 2018 Gallup Poll.
Demographic Trends May Lead To Further Erosion In Death Penalty Support
Changes in the U.S. population appear to be a factor in declining death penalty support in recent years. Groups that are constituting a greater share of the U.S. adult population over time — including millennials and Generation Z, non-White adults and college graduates — all show below-average support for the death penalty.
Over the past four years, an average of 45% of those in Generation Z have favored the death penalty, as have 51% of millennials . That compares with 57% of those in Generation X, 59% of baby boomers and 62% of those born before 1946.
Forty-six percent of non-White Americans, versus 61% of Non-Hispanic White Americans, support the death penalty.
- Among college graduates, 46% favor the death penalty, compared with 60% of those without a college degree.
To be sure, demographic change does not account for all of the attitudinal shift toward the death penalty, as older generations, White adults and college nongraduates are all less supportive of the death penalty now than they were in 2016.
Death Penalty Opponents Supporters See Risk Of Executing The Innocent
Death penalty supporters overwhelmingly view it as morally justified: 90% say that when someone commits a crime like murder, the death penalty is morally justified. Just 26% of death penalty opponents view it as morally justified.
Yet the differences between death penalty supporters and opponents are not as stark when it comes to other opinions about capital punishment. A large majority of those who oppose the death penalty say there is a risk that an innocent person will be put to death; so too do 63% of death penalty supporters.
Nearly eight-in-ten opponents of the death penalty say it does not deter people from committing serious crimes. People who favor the death penalty are divided: 49% say it does not deter serious crimes, while 47% think it does.
A majority of opponents say minorities are more likely than whites to be sentenced to the death penalty for committing similar crimes. That compares with 42% of death penalty supporters; 52% of supporters say whites and minorities are equally likely to be sentenced to the death penalty for similar crimes.
How Many Americans Support The Death Penalty Depends How You Ask
Polling responses to certain policy-related questions — particularly morally or ethically sensitive ones — can differ significantly depending on whether the survey was taken online or by phone.
The use of capital punishment has fallen to historically low levels in recent years. This year, Virginia became the first Southern state to outlaw the practice.
Support for the death penalty has been in decline since the 1990s, when close to four in five Americans were for it. On the campaign trail last year, Joe Biden committed to ending capital punishment nationwide .
Still, a solid majority of Americans continue to favor keeping the death penalty, driven by the conviction that it’s morally justified in cases of murder — even though most of the country recognizes that there are racial disparities in how it’s doled out, and an overwhelming majority admits that it sometimes results in the death of an innocent person.
We can say all this with relative certainty thanks to a Pew Research Center poll released today. Sixty percent considered the death penalty acceptable for people convicted of murder, according to the survey of Pew’s online American Trends Panel.
But arguably the most intriguing part of the report wasn’t the numbers themselves. It was how those numbers might have looked, if the pollsters had used an older method: phone calls.
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New Poll Finds Majority Of Ohioans Support Ending Death Penalty
A new statewide poll finds more Ohioans than not want to end the death penalty.
The ACLU and released the poll on Thursday. It shows that 59% of Ohio voters support replacing the death penalty with life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Support of ending capital punishment differed by party. Sixty nine percent of Democrats and 53% of Republicans agreed that the state should end the death penalty.
The ACLU and OTSE estimate ending death penalty trials would save as much as $16 million per case.
Ohio currrently has 139 people on its death row. A majority of the death row inmates, 56%, are people of color. People of color make up only 15% of the state’s population.
Gov, Mike DeWine has said the state has an “unofficial moratorium” on the death penalty since lethal injection drugs are unavailable.
Death penalty supporters say capital punishment is needed as a deterrent to crime.
The study conducted by the Tarrance Group over a three-day period last fall included 600 registered voters.
% Say There Is Some Risk Of Innocent People Being Put To Death
Pew Research Center conducted this study to better understand Americans’ views about the death penalty. For this analysis, we surveyed 5,109 U.S. adults from April 5 to 11, 2021. Everyone who took part in this survey is a member of the Center’s American Trends Panel , an online survey panel that is recruited through national, random sampling of residential addresses. This way nearly all U.S. adults have a chance of selection. The survey is weighted to be representative of the U.S. adult population by gender, race, ethnicity, partisan affiliation, education and other categories. Read more about the ATP’s methodology.
The use of the death penalty is gradually disappearing in the United States. Last year, in part because of the coronavirus outbreak, fewer people were executed than in any year in nearly three decades.
Yet the death penalty for people convicted of murder continues to draw support from a majority of Americans despite widespread doubts about its administration, fairness and whether it deters serious crimes.
More Americans favor than oppose the death penalty: 60% of U.S. adults favor the death penalty for people convicted of murder, including 27% who strongly favor it. About four-in-ten oppose the death penalty, with 15% strongly opposed, according to a new Pew Research Center survey.
‘a Broken System’: The Conservatives Against The Death Penalty
A group is challenging the practice on traditional rightwing principles: ‘small government, low taxes, sanctity of human life’
Last modified on Tue 5 Mar 2019 15.36 GMT
In the exhibition hall at the conservative grassroot’s annual lovefest, CPAC, the usual range of freedom-touting, gun-toting, climate change-denying, liberal-bashing views were on display.
The National Rifle Association loomed large, as did stalls promoting hunting and fishing, biblical fundamentalism and, quizzically, “domestic uranium”. On Saturday, Donald Trump showed up to deliver perhaps his most extreme speech yet, a freewheeling, two-hour, avowedly off-script hard-right screed.
But one exhibition booth at the CPAC hub in National Harbor, Maryland, had a far less predictable message. A large banner over the stall proclaimed: “Questioning a broken system marked by inefficiency, inequity and inaccuracy.”
The “broken system” being denounced was not socialism, gun control or the other targets modern Republicans love to hate. It was the death penalty.
The booth was covered in posters opposing capital punishment in the words of prominent Republicans. Jay Sekulow, Donald Trump’s lawyer on the Russia collusion inquiry, was quoted in big letters: “Conservatives should question how the death penalty actually works in order to stay true to small government.”
“I have a Republican and Southern Baptist background and everyone I know supported the death penalty,” she said.
Stanley: A Conservative Viewpoint On Ending The Death Penalty
- Bill Stanley
Sen. Bill Stanley, R-Franklin County
- BOB BROWN, Richmond Times-Dispatch
This is a Virginia Department of Corrections undated photo of the gurney used for executions at the Greensville Corrections Center in Jarratt.
I am a conservative Republican, and I am against the death penalty.
During the ten years I have been privileged to represent the 20th District in the Virginia Senate, I have consistently opposed efforts to expand it. That may seem counter-intuitive for those who assume conservatives must support the death penalty as a key component of Republicans’ “tough on crime” stance. In my view, you can be “tough on crime,” be a conservative Republican, and be against the death penalty for both moral and legal reasons.
Opposition to capital punishment is not just a personal belief of mine, but is consistent with my conservative principles. This reasoning is based upon three basic principles: my strong faith in God and the gift of life; my appreciation that our judicial system is not infallible; and my firm belief that capital punishment empowers the government with an awesome authority to which it is not entitled.
In theory, the death penalty makes sense: people who commit heinous acts forfeit their right to live. And as human beings, vengeance has become a part of our emotional lexicon in seeking justice for the unconscionable murder of another human being. However, the death penalty in practice is not that simple.
More Victims Rights And Harsher Penalties For Certain Crimes
- An agenda to restore the public’s safety:
- No-frills prisons that make the threat of jail a deterrent to crime.
- Increased penalties and resources to new drugs such as Ecstasy.
- An effective program of rehabilitation, where appropriate.
- Support of community-based diversion programs for first time, non-violent offenders.
- Reform the invented Exclusionary Rule, which has allowed countless criminals to get off on technicalities.
- Constitutional amendment to protect victims’ rights.
Gop Lawmakers Are Quietly Turning Against The Death Penalty
Republican state legislators across the country have joined with Democrats to ban capital punishment—including in New Hampshire, which recently became the 21st state to end the practice.
David Welch’s wife died on Christmas Day 2016. He doesn’t remember much of what happened that next year. But in the grips of grief, he came to a fundamental realization, he told me: The death penalty is “just morally wrong.”
Welch has served as a Republican in the New Hampshire state House for more than three decades. For most of that time, he had consistently voted to uphold the death penalty. But after his wife’s death, he came to understand that when the state executes someone, it puts another family through the intense period of mourning he went through. “There is no reason for it,” he told me. “They’re innocent.”
Lawmakers in New Hampshire had tried and failed to outlaw the death penalty for two decades. In 2018, they got close: The GOP-controlled state legislature passed a repeal bill, though it didn’t have enough votes to override Republican Governor Chris Sununu’s quick veto. This year was different. A repeal bill, co-sponsored by Welch, passed both chambers with just enough bipartisan support to narrowly best the governor.
Death Penalty Opponents Gain Unlikely Allies: Republicans
No one would ever question Dave Danielson’s credentials as a Republican. As a 17-year-old in his home state of New Hampshire, he led a local group of teenage Barry Goldwater supporters in 1964 and went on to vote for every Republican presidential candidate since.
He also shared the GOP’s support for the death penalty. But seven years ago, after winning election to the New Hampshire House of Representatives, Danielson re-examined that stance after a friend asked how he could reconcile state-authorized executions with his deeply ingrained belief in the sanctity of life. It was a dichotomy he’d never pondered, he recalled.
“I had never considered that conflict until he brought it up,” Danielson said.
After days of soul searching, he reversed course. “I just said I could not support the death penalty,” Danielson, 72, a retired marketing manager from Bedford, New Hampshire, recalled recently. “I came from one side of the coin to another.”
In decades past, the notion of a conservative Republican opposing the death penalty seemed largely counterintuitive. But a growing number of elected Republicans are now breaking with partisan orthodoxy to not only oppose the death penalty but also help lead efforts to repeal it in more than a half-dozen states, often in conflict with leaders and colleagues in their own party.
Newsom acted even though voters in California twice rejected a death penalty repeal, in 2012 and in 2016.
Death Penalty Decree Could Be Quandary For Us Politicians
MINNEAPOLIS – Pope Francis’ decree that the death penalty is “inadmissible” in all cases could pose a dilemma for Roman Catholic politicians and judges in the United States who are faced with whether to strictly follow the tenets of their faith or the rule of law.
Some Catholic leaders in death penalty states have said they’ll continue to support capital punishment. But experts say Francis’ change could shift political debates, loom over Supreme Court confirmation hearings, and make it difficult for devout Catholic judges to uphold the law as written.
The question of whether or not Catholic political and judicial leaders would be sinning if they continue to support the death penalty is up for interpretation.
“It’s going to be a matter of conscience,” said the Rev. Peter Clark, director of the Institute of Clinical Bioethics at St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia. “Judges may have to recuse themselves from many cases, if they truly think it’s in conflict with their conscience.”
As with abortion, many Catholic political leaders and judges have been grappling with the death penalty for some time.
Previous church teachings said capital punishment was allowed in some cases if it was the “only possible way of effectively defending human lives against the unjust aggressor.” That gave politicians a way to honor their faith and the law.
“If we say we are for dignity of all life, that includes innocent and guilty as well,” she told The Associated Press.
Fund Suicide Prevention Mental Health Services For Police
Republicans: Oppose Democratic police oversight bill. Republicans sponsored a bipartisan bill to fund suicide prevention and mental health support services for law enforcement officers.
Democrats: Restrict police use of force and increase public oversight. Bill held officers liable in lawsuits, banned no-knock warrants and stopped military surplus acquisitions.