There were a couple of death penalty protests in Arkansas on Friday. That is not unusual as an execution approaches. But look who was among the protesters.
Phil McCausland reports for NBC:
An Arkansas judge will be barred from ruling on death penalty cases and could be disciplined after he attended two death penalty protests on Friday -- the same day that he blocked a spate of executions scheduled by the state.Actually, it might be a good thing if all the dyed-in-the-wool anti-death-penalty judges in the country showed up at protests and got themselves booted off the cases. That would be better than dressing up their opposition in faux constitutional blather in judicial opinions.
On Monday, the Arkansas Supreme Court reassigned all of the death penalty cases that Pulaski County Circuit Court Judge Wendell Griffen would have overseen -- following reports and photos of him strapping himself to a cot in front of the governor's mansion on Good Friday in a protest of the state's lethal injection policy.
"Judge Wendell Griffen is referred to the Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission to consider whether he has violated the Code of Judicial Conduct," the order states.
But it wasn't immediately clear how the could affect Griffen's Friday decision to place a temporary restraining order on one of the key drugs in the state's lethal injection protocol, although the plaintiff in the case had sought a dismissal.