Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Utah Senate panel OKs longshot death penalty repeal


SALT LAKE CITY — A longshot proposal for conservative Utah to join 19 states and the District of Columbia in abolishing the death penalty cleared its first test at the state Legislature on Tuesday evening.

A bipartisan group of senators on a judiciary committee voted 5-2 to advance the measure to Utah's Senate for debate, but one Republican voting for the measure said he was conflicted and may not support it later. That debate could happen as soon as this week.

Steve Urquhart, the Republican senator running the proposal, acknowledges that there's strong support for capital punishment with Utah's GOP-controlled Legislature and Republican governor. But Urquhart hopes arguments about the cost of capital punishment after years of court appeals and the chance of wrongful convictions may sway some of his colleagues.


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