Dems Ask Trump Administration to Stop Executing Inmates Ahead of Biden Transition
Four Democratic lawmakers are trying to convince the Department of Justice to stop executing federal prisoners during the Trump administration’s lame-duck period.
The Democratic Party’s 2020 platform calls for the elimination of the death penalty. By contrast, the Department of Justice under Attorney General William Barr brought the federal death penalty back in July, executing the first federal death row inmate in 17 years. Since then, the feds have executed seven inmates (a modern record), and there are three executions still scheduled for before the end of the year. One of the inmates, Orlando Hall, is scheduled for execution this Thursday.
Sens. Patrick Leahy (D–Vt.), Dick Durbin (D–Ill.), and Cory Booker (D–N.J.), along with Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D–Mass.), have sent a letter to Barr asking him to suspend these pending executions. The letter notes:
President-Elect Biden’s plan for strengthening America’s commitment to justice includes the elimination of the federal death penalty and Vice-President-Elect [Kamala] Harris is an original cosponsor of legislation we have introduced to eliminate the federal death penalty. A record number of Americans voted in favor of President-Elect Biden and Vice-President Elect Harris and they deserve an opportunity to implement their policy agenda without the Trump Administration rushing to take preemptive and irreversible steps.
The four Dem
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