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Rejecting Mitigation

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Here's one for the "more interesting for who said it than what was said" file:

In a concurring opinion in a federal sentencing case:  "It appears to me that aside from cooperation with the government there are no other mitigating factors in the case of a foreign enemy terrorist, Ressam or any other."

And who is this right-wing, redneck, pro-government judge who categorically rejects all but one form of mitigating evidence for an entire class of cases?
Stephen Reinhardt.

I agree that categories of cases exist where we can and should categorically reject mitigation.  For example, if a person (1) commits premeditated murder or commits a rape and then murders the victim and (2) has previously committed such a murder, then we should be able to say categorically that no mitigation can possibly outweigh the aggravation.  A death sentence should follow directly from conviction.  Unfortunately, the Supreme Court has seen it differently.

The actual holding of the case, BTW, is that the federal district judge let the Millennium Bomber off too easy and has to do it over.

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