O'Malley Takes On Death Penalty In Maryland Senate Hearing | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

O'Malley Takes On Death Penalty In Maryland Senate Hearing

Play associated audio
Gov. Martin O'Malley testified Thursday in favor of repealing the death penalty.
Matt Bush
Gov. Martin O'Malley testified Thursday in favor of repealing the death penalty.

For a second straight day, Maryland governor Martin O'Malley went before a Senate committee to push a top priority during this year's session of the General Assembly. Today it was the repeal of Maryland's death penalty.

O'Malley has pushed for a repeal long before he became governor and was mayor of Baltimore. He gave a long list of reasons to the Senate Judicial Proceedings committee as to why capital punishment should end in the state, citing cost, racial bias, ineffectiveness as a deterrant and its inaccuracy.

"Between 2001 and 2011, an average of five death row inmates (nationally) were exonerated every year," O'Malley said. "There is no such thing as a fool-proof death penalty, and there is no way to reverse a mistake if we execute an innocent person."

And even while Senate President Mike Miller, a supporter of the death penalty, expects a repeal of it to pass his chamber this year — something that did not happen when the measure last made it to the Senate floor in 2009 — getting to that point is still not a guarantee.

A part of this year's bill includes an appropriation, which means it wouldn't be able to petitioned to a ballot referendum for voters to decide, and Miller wants that changed.

"It's a subterfuge to avoid having it petitioned to referendum," Miller says. "And, although I don't like to see bills petitioned to referendum, I don't believe in trying to thwart the constitution and the laws of the state which allows for petitioning to referendum."

Should there be enough petitions for it to get on the ballot, something Miller also expects will happen, then voters will decide on whether to repeal capital punishment in the fall of 2014.

NPR

'American Crime' And 'The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt' Highlight The TV Revolution

Tina Fey co-created the quirky comedy The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt for Netflix; John Ridley made the emotionally raw drama American Crime for ABC. TV critic David Bianculli says they're both good.
NPR

Dump The Lumps: The World Health Organization Says Eat Less Sugar

WHO says there's strong evidence that excessive sugar is bad for us. So it's recommending that we cut back significantly.
NPR

Justices Roberts And Kennedy The Key Votes In Health Law Case

No telling yet which side will win. But did Justice Kennedy's mixed signals Wednesday hint that he was leaning toward the administration's view of federal subsidies for health insurance?
WAMU 88.5

Transportation App Bridj Has Bus-Sized Ambitions For D.C.

It works similar to other ride-sharing apps, in that you establish a location and destination, and order a ride. But you'll be shown where to catch a Bridj bus, instead of getting a vehicle at your door.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.