Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Colorado Death Penalty Watch

Sadly, the Colorado Senate has voted down a bill to repeal the death penalty.

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At Wednesday, May 13, 2009 at 3:41:00 PM EST , Anonymous Michael Westmoreland-White said...

The narrow House victory and narrow Senate defeat (both by a single vote) show that this is not over. I hope you are part of a CO chapter of the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty or a similar abolitionist group.

It's time for strategy in preparation for next year's session.

1)Connecting the repeal to money saved which can be used for cold crimes was brilliant even though the senate tried to de-couple this. (Where are they gonna get the money for cold crime investigation in a recession without the savings from dp abo lition.) Try something like this, again, so that it appeals to law and order types.

2) DP abolition must be tied to life in prison without parole. Polling shows that a significant # of people who will answer that they support the dp, switch to opposition when given the life-without-parole option. It removes the fear of return murderers.

3) Get the churches to be vocal in their support for abolition. (Also synagogues, mosques, etc.) Get clergy to preach against the death penalty, write op-eds. Do public events in clerical garb. VISIBLE public moral leadership is key.

4) Research the bios of the legislators who voted against abolition. See how many might be persuadable. Others might be defeated at the ballot box. (Do this with both houses of the legislature because we wouldn't want to get the votes in the Senate only to suddenly lose the House.)

5. Pressure the governor to lead on this issue. "As a former prosecutor, I have always been a law and order. blah-blah-blah. But I have seen no evidence that the death penalty reduces homicides. With DNA evidence, we have seen how risky it is to chance executing an innocent person. We can protect our citizens and show moral leadership at the same time. Blah-Blah-Blah."

6. Get this topic on as many local talk shows, etc. Make it a topic of debate in beauty salons, barber shops, taverns, union halls, schools, university classrooms. Recruit folk like Glen Stassen to make the case on evangelical campuses like Denver Seminary as well as Iliff.

7. Try for major support from the Native American community, too--maybe even former Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell (R-KY)

CO is close (unlike KY). Make it a matter of Western leadership.

At Saturday, May 16, 2009 at 8:31:00 PM EST , Blogger haitianministries said...

Thanks for sharing these ideas, Michael! You're a great strategist.


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