“We should forgive our enemies, but not before they are hanged.”
-Joe Abercrombie, Before they are Hanged
On Wednesday, District Judge Tanya S. Chutkan said that four men scheduled for execution in Indiana would be “irreparably harmed” if they were to be put to death without being allowed to have a court hear their case. The inmates argue that the execution method of lethal injection constitutes “cruel and unusual punishment,” something barred by the Eighth Amendment of the United States Constitution.
The United States has not executed a federal inmate since 2003. Earlier this year, the Trump Administration, under the direction of Attorney General, William Barr, announced the lifting of the moratorium on federal executions. The preceding moratorium was in place because of a series of court rulings against the conventional method of execution, which involved a “cocktail” of three different drugs for injections.
In July, Attorney General Barr directed the United States Department of Justice to use a single drug instead, pentobarbital, which is a potent sedative that slows the body, including the central nervous system. After injection, the effects of the drug lead to what he claimed, a “sure, but painless death.” During her district ruling, Judge Chutkan said that this would go against a federal law stipulating that death row inmates should be executed “in the manner prescribed by the state of conviction.” By changing the dose, Attorney General Barr would be altering the three-injection process currently in use in the state of Indiana.
All stated and federal executions were ruled “unlawful” by a 1972 Supreme Court decision, only to be overturned in 1976 ruling that reinstated the death penalty to several states. In 1988 the government passed legislation that also reinstated federal executions. According to the Death Penalty Information Center, 78 inmates were sentenced to death in federal cases between 1988 and 2018, but only three have since been executed. As of the writing of this article, 62 inmates are currently serving on central death row.
Federal court defeat is nothing new for the Trump Administration. From immigration to personal income taxes, to border security and now executions, the liberal court system of America has held President Trump in a virtual “stranglehold” to battle against his policies and executive orders. Often, Trump’s legal woes occur in heavily liberal federal court districts of the First, Second, and the “Looney Left” Ninth district.
During Obama’s 8-year reign, he appointed the following number of judges to the federal level:
- Article III judgeships to be confirmed by the US Senate is 329
- Two justices to the Supreme Court
- 55 judges to the US Court of Appeals
- 268 judges to the US district courts
- Four judges to the US Court of International Trade
And there you have it, folks. Our nation’s president is facing an uphill battle on every front regarding policy. President Obama appointed more federal judges to the office than any other president in history – and thus, with these appointments being “life-long,” the battle has just begun for a hopeful conservation generation to come. Under Article II, all judges are to hold their seats until they resign, die, or are removed from office via impeachment from the House of Representatives, followed by a conviction by the Senate. As we have seen from the impeachment circus circulating in Washington today like a hooker in Hollywood, the democratic-controlled House would in no way ever entertain the removal from office one of their liberal-legal scholars.
Despite this setback, Attorney General Barr and President Trump have vowed to take this battle of federal executions to the United States Supreme Court – hoping for quick and decisive change. HERE is a list of the current federal inmates on death row – after reading the depth of some of these convictions, a 3-shot cocktail is more humane than what was afforded to their victims.
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