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According to MSNBC and SCOTUSBLOG, the Supremes will be reviewing the constitutionality of lethal injection. The underlying case is Baze v. Rees, 217 S.W.3d 207 (KY 2006).
 
Posts: 2131 | Location: McKinney, Texas, USA | Registered: February 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Good. They need to put an end to the nonsense in California and elsewhere.
 
Posts: 7860 | Location: Georgetown, Texas | Registered: January 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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5-4
 
Posts: 1243 | Location: houston, texas, u.s.a. | Registered: October 19, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Question is whether their ruling will be helpful/logical/nonsensical/useless. Remember "Penry" - unconstitutional to execute the mentally retarded but don't ask us what MR means.
 
Posts: 62 | Location: Richmond, Texas, USA | Registered: May 07, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Opinion by Robert, CJ.
 
Posts: 7860 | Location: Georgetown, Texas | Registered: January 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Texas sticks with lethal injections despite Supreme Court review
By JEFF CARLTON
Associated Press Writer

DALLAS � The nation's busiest death penalty state isn't budging from plans to continue executing by lethal injection despite a Supreme Court review of whether the practice is cruel and unusual, Texas officials said Tuesday.

"We will go forward with our interpretation of the law," Gov. Rick Perry said.

Ten of the 37 states that use the three-drug cocktail under review by the Supreme Court have suspended its use after opponents alleged it was ineffective and cruel, according to the Death Penalty Information Center.

But Texas is unlikely to join states who have halted lethal injection executions, unless the Supreme Court issues a blanket stay. Twenty-six people have been executed by lethal injection in Texas this year, the latest Tuesday night. A 27th execution is scheduled for Thursday.

"We are monitoring this but until the court rules or gives direction, nothing changes from our perspective," said Allison Castle, a Perry spokeswoman. "Once the court rules, we would, of course, follow their direction."

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott declined to comment on lethal injection questions.

"The Office of the Attorney General addresses these cases individually through proper court proceedings and will continue to do so," Abbott spokesman Thomas Kelley said.

Death penalty foes said the court's decision to accept the case is an overdue look at determining whether death row inmates are being "tortured to death" by lethal injection.

"This is a cruel way to die," said David Dow, a lawyer with Texas Defender Service.

The high court has never before addressed whether the three drug cocktail � consisting of an anesthetic, a muscle paralyzer and a substance to stop the heart � violates the Eighth Amendment's ban on cruel and unusual punishment. The case the court is considering stems from a challenge by two inmates on death row in Kentucky.

A successful challenge of lethal injection would be a "travesty," said Rusty Hubbarth, an Austin lawyer and vice president of Justice For All, a Houston-based victims-rights group.

"Lethal injection is the same process that's used for a beloved pet, which is a lot more deserving of compassion than a convicted killer," Hubbarth said. "Lethal injection is an incredibly humane way to put convicted murderers to death."

Death penalty reform advocates have complained for years that lethal injection is inhumane. They acknowledge that much of their evidence is anecdotal.

"There are problems in Texas that range from difficulty of inserting IVs to IVs that come out during the procedure to inmates appearing to be conscious ... at the time the drugs are administered, " Dow said.

Steve Hall, the director of StandDown Texas Project, an organization calling for a death penalty moratorium, said there have been problems with lethal injection executions in Ohio and Florida. He also said medical studies have shown that some inmates were not sufficiently anesthetized at the time of execution.

"I don't think there is any doubt that it can be" cruel and unusual, Hall said. "There's the real potential that someone might not be executed properly."

If the three-drug cocktail were to be outlawed, it wouldn't be the first time Texas adapted to changing rules on how to humanely execute inmates. Criminals who committed capital crimes died by hanging in Texas from 1819 to 1923, said Jason Clark, a spokesman for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.

In 1923, the state authorized the use of the electric chair, which was used for the first time on Feb. 8, 1924. The first person executed in this manner was Charles Reynolds of Red River County, followed immediately that day by four others. The last of 361 inmates to die in the electric chair was executed in 1964.
 
Posts: 7860 | Location: Georgetown, Texas | Registered: January 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Texas sticks with lethal injections ...
 
Posts: 689 | Registered: March 01, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Merely a pointed headline.
 
Posts: 7860 | Location: Georgetown, Texas | Registered: January 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Bruning will appeal electric chair ruling
By the Lincoln Journal Star

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2008 - 07:13:27 pm CDT
Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning said Wednesday his office will appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court a state court ruling declaring the electric chair unconstitutional.

Details.
 
Posts: 7860 | Location: Georgetown, Texas | Registered: January 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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From SCOTUSBLOG:

Lethal injection allowed

In a widely splintered decision, the Supreme Court cleared the way for executions to resume across the country, concluding that the most common method of lethal injection does not violate the Constitution.
 
Posts: 2131 | Location: McKinney, Texas, USA | Registered: February 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I'm surprised at how quick this decision came out! I don't see the opinion up yet, either at SCOTUSblog or the court's site, but I'll be interested to read it and see what the "widely splintered" split is.
 
Posts: 1115 | Location: Waxahachie | Registered: December 09, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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7 to 2, but with 7 opinions! Ginsburg and Souter were the only dissents, but there Stevens, Alito, Thomas, and Breyer all concurred in the judgment only, with just Roberts, Kennedy, and Alito on the majority opinion.
 
Posts: 1115 | Location: Waxahachie | Registered: December 09, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Posts: 527 | Location: Fort Worth, Texas, | Registered: May 23, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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So the plurality has the "substantial risk of severe pain that could be reduced by adopting readily available procedures"

The dissent has the "untoward risk" test.

Scalia and Thomas have the "deliberately designed to inflict pain" test.

It seems to me that everyone will simply carry out the lethal injection the Kentucky way because at least 7 judges agree that that was constitutional. Tests be damned.
 
Posts: 1243 | Location: houston, texas, u.s.a. | Registered: October 19, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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This machine was specifically designed to minimize the potential for pain and uncertainty of earlier procedures:
 
Posts: 689 | Registered: March 01, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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so, the issue still has to be litigated vis-a-vis the Texas protocol and the training of the personnel who carry it out. Who's it going to be?
 
Posts: 146 | Location: Dallas, Texas USA | Registered: November 02, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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How do you find the information on the Texas protocol?
 
Posts: 1243 | Location: houston, texas, u.s.a. | Registered: October 19, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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TDCJ, I suppose. The claim gets passed around from habeas applicant to habeas applicant, so I've only ever seen the protocol attached to a last minute writ application, accompanied by an expert aff't.
 
Posts: 146 | Location: Dallas, Texas USA | Registered: November 02, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Laughing now. I guess it will be me, litigating it in Carlton Turner, which was stayed 2 days after SCOTUS granted cert. in Baze v. Rees.
 
Posts: 146 | Location: Dallas, Texas USA | Registered: November 02, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Well then, the issue is in good hands.
 
Posts: 2131 | Location: McKinney, Texas, USA | Registered: February 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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