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Neb. Gov. Vetoes DP Repeal, Seeks Votes to Sustain

AP reports that Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts has vetoed a bill to repeal the death penalty that passed the one-house legislature 32-15.  He needs to change three votes to have his veto sustained.

But some lawmakers said they still believed the veto could be sustained -- and at least one senator who previously voted for the repeal said Tuesday he had changed his mind.

"You wouldn't see an effort like this if all hope was lost," said Sen. Beau McCoy, an Omaha Republican who supports capital punishment.

Sen. Jerry Johnson, a Republican who voted for the repeal, said he decided to switch votes because he believes the new governor's administration needs more time to carry out an execution. Johnson said he took calls all weekend from constituents who support the death penalty.
For opposing repeal efforts nationwide, it is important that supporters of the death penalty take an active stance in pushing reforms, not just opposing repeal.  The opponents are getting their swing votes with the argument that we aren't enforcing it anyway, so it's just a waste of money.  The answer must be to push the reforms that will get it enforced.

One simple reform would speed things up substantially in states that have not yet reformed their successive petition rules.  Adopt the rule endorsed by a plurality of the Supreme Court in Kuhlmann v. Wilson (1986) that no prisoner will get consideration of a second collateral review petition unless he supplements his petition with a colorable showing of actual innocence.

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