6 Jurnalul de Studii Juridice 13 (2011)

handle is hein.journals/jstudice6 and id is 1 raw text is: 











           INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS, A
           FOOLPROOF DEATH PENALTY ACT, AND
           THE POLITICS OF CAPITAL PUNISHMENT

                                                         Russell G.  MURPHY'

        Abstract

        A  majority of American  states recognize the death penalty as a lawful and
constitutional sentence for the most serious crimes committed bj the most dangerous and
blameworthy criminals. However, in recent years, numerous flaws in capital punishment
systems have caused courts in the United States to reverse death sentences. Over one hundred
death row inmates have been exonerated and released from prison. These same problems -
racial bias, untrustworthy eidence, police and prosecutor misconduct, jury ma!functioning -
have been joined with more philosophical notions of the limits of government and repect for
human  dignity to make capita/punishment a human rights iolation. One state Governor,
Mitt Romney   of the U.S. State of Massachusetts, proposed legislation that would have
eliminated many of the shortcomings of death penalty practice b creating a 'foo/proof' capita!
system built on heajy reliance on scientfiic evidence to establish guilt. This article describes that
law, examines political reactions to it, and explores the political implications of Governor
Romney's efforts for his current campaign to become the 2012 Presidential nominee of the
Republican Pary of the United States.

        Keywords:
        criminal sentencing, death penaly, capital punishment, /egislation, public polig,
human  rights.











  Russell G.  MURPHY - Professor of Law, Suffolk University   Law  School, Boston,
Massachusetts. The author wishes to thank Law School Dean Camille Nelson for her sustained
support in the writing of this article. Associate Dean Kathleen Engel provided invaluable advice
at many stages of its development. Law student Jason Chandler performed superb technical and
background editing of the article. It is dedicated to my beloved wife, Professor Kate Nace Day,
Email Address: rgmkndg(Tmail.com,



    MURPHY,  R., G., (2011) INTERNATIONAL IUMAN RIGHTS, A FOOLPROOF  DEATH
  PENALTY  ACT, AND THE POLITICS OF  CAPITAL PUNISHMENT,  Jurnalul de Studii Juridice,
                           Anul VI, Nr. 1-2, lunie, pp: 13-42

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