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February 21, 2015

Some notable gubenatorial capital developments

Though I am eager to start migrating our class discussions away from capital sentencing and punishment to non-capital sentencing and punishments, the notable death penalty news keeps coming.  Specifically, check out these two recent posts from my main blog:

As always, I am eager to hear student reactions to these developments and others in the comments or elsewhere.

February 21, 2015 in Clemency, Current Affairs, Death penalty history | Permalink


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I take issue with the Philly DA's argument that the Governor's action is "flagrantly unconstitutional." The relevant provision and the case law surrounding that provision of the PA constitution only suggests that a reprieve delays a scheduled event in order to allow for some further process. It does not prescribe specific litigatory, judicial, or alternative procedures that are the only grounds for delay. Gov. Wolf could theoretically be granting reprieves regularly as he and the legislature reexamine the efficacy and necessity of its capital punishment system. This would be well within his constitutional rights.

Posted by: Ryan Semerad | Feb 24, 2015 9:29:37 AM

For some contrast to executives using their power to provide relief from capital punishment, see http://bigstory.ap.org/article/e9a09f22bf8f4a72aac7813bbf5f94fc/indonesias-president-rejects-any-intervention-executions.

Posted by: Ryan Semerad | Feb 24, 2015 9:59:37 AM

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