Virginia abolishes the death penalty

IIn the American state of Virginia, the death penalty is abolished. Both houses of the state parliament voted for the abolition, leaving only the signature of Governor Ralph Northam missing. His approval is considered certain. “This is an important step forward in ensuring that our criminal justice system is fair and equitable,” Northam said on Monday in a joint statement with the chairmen of the House of Representatives, Eileen Filler-Corn, and Senate Majority Leader Dick Saslaw. So far, 22 of the 50 states in the United States have abolished the death penalty.

“In Virginia’s long history, this state has executed more people than any other state,” the statement said. “It is time we put an end to this machinery of death.” The death penalty is not a fair and effective instrument of criminal justice, it said. Since 1976, there have been 113 executions in the state, according to the Death Penalty Information Center.

Lengthy litigation

The death penalty is on the decline in the United States as a whole. In many places this has to do with changing public opinion, but also with increasing difficulties in obtaining the necessary substances for lethal injection. In addition, the death penalty tends to lead to lengthy – and costly – legal disputes.

2020 were in the United States According to the Death Penalty Information Center 17 people were executed by five states and the federal government. The federal government had not carried out the death penalty for almost two decades. However, the administration of ex-President Donald Trump pushed through its reintroduction. New President Joe Biden opposes the death penalty.

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