Federal Death Penalty Prosecutions Increasing

The Justice Department is out for blood in Brooklyn's federal courthouse, where three death penalty trials are underway.

A fourth capital trial involving a triple-murder defendant has opened in Manhattan federal court as well.

"It's totally unprecedented to have two, let alone four cases going on at one time in one city," said Kevin McNally, a death penalty expert.

Even as states back away from the death penalty, federal capital prosecutions have increased. The US Attorneys who favor capital punishment find support in the Bush administration's Justice Department.

Death penalty opponents have complained that starting with President Bush's first attorney general, John Ashcroft, officials in Washington began rubber-stamping the pursuit of the death penalty in federal cases, particularly in states with no capital punishment laws of their own.

How about a little congressional oversight of the Justice Department's increasing reliance on death as a punishment?

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    Overseeing the federal death penalty (none / 0) (#1)
    by Fredo on Mon Jan 15, 2007 at 06:47:41 PM EST
    I'd love to see that oversight.  I'd love to see the Democratic party come out four-square against the death penalty.  Take a principled stand and all that, don't you know?  I know of no quicker route to a Republican return to the majority.

    The Democrats know this, and for that reason they will be deaf to principle.

    Some Republicans opposed the death penalty (none / 0) (#2)
    by JSN on Mon Jan 15, 2007 at 07:13:44 PM EST
    when it was last debated in Iowa and when they had both the Senate, House and Governor. It would have passed on a straight party line vote but enough Republicans voted against it so as to offset the Democrats that voted for it and the bill was defeated.
    Since then the Republican legislative leaders have strangled the death penalty bill in its crib.

    Both parties use the tough on crime card when it is to their advantage.


    Barbaric countries usually do have barbaric... (none / 0) (#3)
    by Bill Arnett on Tue Jan 16, 2007 at 12:36:45 PM EST
    ...punishments to levy against its citizens.

    Maybe this is why bush is replacing so many U.S. Attorneys General - for death penalties and prosecutors being prepared for when bush declares martial law.