GOP OH Justice Calls For Death Penalty Abolition


Paul Pfeifer, the senior justice on the Ohio Supreme Court and a co-author of the state's 1981 capital punishment law, now believes that executions should be abolished primarily because it's being used for cases for which it was never intended, reports the Columbus Dispatch. “I think the time's right on this one. Politically it's right,” he said “You have Republicans in every direction. [] With that political configuration, it would be the most opportune time to seriously debate and discuss whether or not we have the death penalty.”

Pfeifer said he will talk to both the governor and legislative leaders about his position. New Republical Gov. John Kasich, who favors the death penalty, faces the first execution on his watch Feb.17. Pfeifer also called for cleaning up the state constitution, citing provisions specifying where casinos can be located and creating a livestock board. Asked if he felt he would have to recuse himself from capital-punishment cases, Pfeifer said, “No, no, no. “I have a First Amendment right to say any of this stuff. [] It's the law. I took an oath to uphold the law. I would not expect to recuse.”


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