Candidates On the Death Penalty
James Ridgeway of the Village Voice analyzes the Democratic candidates positions on the death penalty. Three are opposed in all instances: Dennis Kucinich, Al Sharpton, and Carol Moseley Braun. Here are the positions of the remaining six, from least worst to worst (in our view):
Clark and Kerry support the death penalty in some instances but voice the strongest doubts.
He would support mandatory review of all death penalty sentences. "I'll tell you, I'm uneasy about the death penalty," Clark said answering a question recently in Arkansas. "A government like the United States has the right to, in extraordinary cases, take the life of a criminal, but I don't like the way the death penalty has been applied in America," Clark said. "I think it's been applied in an unfair and discriminatory fashion and I think we need to go back and use modern technology and unpack all those cases on death row."
John Kerry says he favors life imprisonment over the death penalty, though he advocates the execution of terrorists. Interviewed on Meet the Press last February, Kerry told host Tim Russert that he advocates a moratorium on the death penalty, but that in the end it's up to the states to decide: "It’s fought state for state by state prosecutors. That’s where it’s done. And I would honor, obviously, the laws of those states, and that’s the way we should proceed."
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