Go to HHH home page.
Smart Politics
 


Death Penalty Debate Continues in Wisconsin

Bookmark and Share

Even though Democratic Governor Jim Doyle has resolved to veto any legislation coming out of Madison that supports the introduction of the death penalty in the Badger State, seven Republican Assemblymen sponsored a bill on Wednesday that would execute "vicious" murderers.

Even if the bill passed an Assembly floor vote and got by the Democrat-led Senate, Doyle is adamant in his opposition to the death penalty, whose 150+ year ban in Wisconsin is the longest of all states in the country without the death penalty. The last (and only) execution in Wisconsin was in 1851.

But it is not the Republican Assembly lawmakers who are out of step with Wisconsinites on this issue. Voters passed an advisory referendum last November by a double-digit margin (55.5 to 44.5 percent) to bring back the death penalty. In fact, voters in 68 of Wisconsin's 72 counties supported the introduction of the death penalty for persons convicted of first-degree intentional homicide if the conviction is supported by DNA evidence. Even Democratic mainstay Milwaukee County narrowly approved the referendum, with 50.2 percent supporting the measure. Only voters in Dane County (home to the state's most liberal city, Madison), Iowa County (bordering Dane—Dodgeville, Mineral Point), Eau Claire County, and Portage County (Stevens Point) voted against the death penalty referendum.

Wisconsin's support for the death penalty in Election 2006 is particularly meaningful, as the ballot box was flooded with votes for high-profile Democrats at the top of the ballot (Governor Doyle, Senator Herb Kohl). Voters also put the Democrats back in power of the Senate and took back one Congressional seat (WI-08).

Previous post: Smart Politics Live Blogging at Klobuchar Event
Next post: Klobuchar, the Environment, and Smart Politics Live Blogging

Leave a comment


Remains of the Data

No Free Passes: States With 2 Major Party Candidates in Every US House Race

Indiana has now placed candidates from both major parties on the ballot in a nation-best 189 consecutive U.S. House races, with New Hampshire, Minnesota, Idaho, and Montana also north of 100 in a row.

Political Crumbs

Gubernatorial Highs and Lows

Two sitting governors currently hold the record for the highest gubernatorial vote ever received in their respective states by a non-incumbent: Republican Matt Mead of Wyoming (65.7 percent in 2010) and outgoing GOPer Dave Heineman of Nebraska (73.4 percent in 2006). Republican Gary Herbert of Utah had not previously won a gubernatorial contest when he notched a state record 64.1 percent for his first victory in 2010, but was an incumbent at the time after ascending to the position in 2009 after the early departure of Jon Huntsman. Meanwhile, two sitting governors hold the record in their states for the lowest mark ever recorded by a winning gubernatorial candidate (incumbent or otherwise): independent-turned-Democrat Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island (36.1 percent in 2010) and Democrat Terry McAuliffe of Virginia (47.8 percent in 2013).


An Idaho Six Pack

Two-term Idaho Republican Governor Butch Otter only polled at 39 percent in a recent PPP survey of the state's 2014 race - just four points ahead of Democratic businessman A.J. Balukoff. Otter's low numbers reflect his own struggles as a candidate (witness his weak primary win against State Senator Russ Fulcher) combined with the opportunity for disgruntled Idahoans to cast their votes for one of four third party and independent candidates, who collectively received the support of 12 percent of likely voters: Libertarian John Bujak, the Constitution Party's Steve Pankey, and independents Jill Humble and Pro-Life (aka Marvin Richardson). The six candidate options in a gubernatorial race sets an all-time record in the Gem State across the 46 elections conducted since statehood. The previous high water mark of five candidates was reached in seven previous cycles: 1902, 1904, 1908, 1912, 1914, 1966, and 2010.


more POLITICAL CRUMBS

Humphrey School Sites
CSPG
Humphrey New Media Hub

Issues />

<div id=
Abortion
Afghanistan
Budget and taxes
Campaign finances
Crime and punishment
Economy and jobs
Education
Energy
Environment
Foreign affairs
Gender
Health
Housing
Ideology
Immigration
Iraq
Media
Military
Partisanship
Race and ethnicity
Reapportionment
Redistricting
Religion
Sexuality
Sports
Terrorism
Third parties
Transportation
Voting