After AG Barr resumes executions, a federal judge blocks them.
Capital punishment has existed for almost as long as man has
existed. It is the natural reaction when a person commits a crime so heinous
that there isn’t another option. While there has been debate for many years
about the legality of the practice, Attorney General William Barr made the
decision in July to resume capital punishment at the federal petitionary in
As a believer in the rule of law, I accept as true the
premise that capital punishment is required for a civil society.
Currently, the federal government has not conducted an execution in over 15 years. Meanwhile, the taxpayer is on the hook for continued care of criminals who have been condemned to die because of their actions.
According to Josh Gerstein at Politico:
A judge has blocked the scheduled executions of four federal death row inmates, effectively freezing the Trump administration’s effort to resume imposing the death penalty in a federal system that saw its last execution more than a decade and a half ago.
The order issued Wednesday night by U.S. District Court Judge Tanya Chutkan halts four executions that U.S. officials planned to carry out starting next month.
Unsurprisingly, Judge Chutkan is an Obama appointee. The
inmates scheduled to be executed filed a motion based on a change of execution
method from a three drug cocktail to a single drug.
In granting the injunction, Chutkan noted the obvious fact that permitting the executions would deprive the inmates of their ability to pursue their legal challenges.
That’s quite the cognitive leap, depriving inmates the ability to pursue legal challenges. Arguably, those inmates made the decisions and committed the crimes that landed them on death row in the first place. And what of their victims? What about their rights?