Skip to comments.NBC poll shows support for death penalty undimmed by recent botched execution
Posted on 05/15/2014 7:45:17 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
The botched execution of a brutal murderer in Oklahoma has done nothing to change American minds about the death penalty, but does have them looking to the past for better solutions. A new NBC poll shows the death penalty enjoying a significant level of public support — more than many other government policies — if still down from its peak twenty years ago:
A badly botched lethal injection in Oklahoma has not chipped away at the American public’s support of the death penalty, although two-thirds of voters would back alternatives to the needle, an exclusive NBC News poll shows. …
A comfortable majority of those questioned 59% said they favor the death penalty as the ultimate punishment for murder, while 35% said they are opposed.
That split is in line with surveys done before Lockett’s death in the last two years, and also reflects the erosion of support for capital punishment since the 1990s, when it was more than 70%.
“I dont think this fundamentally altered views about the death penalty,” said Bill McInturff of Public Opinion Strategies.
NBC didn’t have the full poll data on line, but did include a few morsels in a separate article. There is a definite split along racial lines about the death penalty, with 58% of black respondents opposed and 64% of white respondents in favor. Catholics are twice as likely to oppose the death penalty as evangelical or fundamentalist Christians, but only a quarter of those opposed to the death penalty do so out of religious convictions. Half of Democrats oppose the death penalty, but only 18% of Republicans do. The most curious of them was this:
Having a family member who has been in prison or on probation did not make a respondent more likely to oppose or support the death penalty.
I would have guessed that this would be a demo that would lean hard against the death penalty, as one would suspect that they would have a lot more skepticism about the process that delivers such a penalty. Surprising.
The rest of this isn’t terribly surprising at all. One botched execution will not change minds on the death penalty, although it’s clearly changing minds about lethal injection. Oddly enough, lethal injection finds its biggest support among those who are opposed to the death penalty; 70% of those say it should be the only option, while only 11% of death-penalty supporters say the same thing.
What, then, should replace it? If one wanted a sure-fire and humane method, the guillotine would be the choice, but its industrial-scope application in the French Revolution would make that a politically untenable choice. Firing squads have a lower rate of screw-ups, but they’re bloody too. The best option, according to a retired Army officer interviewed by NBC, is hanging:
“There is no such thing as killing someone humanely,” he added. “But if hanging is done properly, it’s more humane than lethal injection because there are fewer things that can go wrong.”
The same man made this ironic observation, though:
After the Lockett debacle, he is more convinced than ever that hanging is the best option.
After all, he said, “that’s how they killed Saddam Hussein.”
That hanging, of course, was famously botched and nearly resulted in a beheading.
No method will be perfect, which also describes the process that consigns people to death row in the first place. I’m opposed to the death penalty for that reason and for the way in which people like Lovett become secular martyrs in the aftermath of years of controversy over their culpability. But if we are going to have executions, then we’d better be prepared to see a few of them botched no matter the method used.
How was it “botched”? Did the condemned man live?
Replace “botched” with “successful”.
NBC has not detailed the atrocities committed by the Oklahoma monster.
Well, the media is saying that the initial effort at execution didn’t work well. As I recall, the guy had a heart attack while they were trying again to do the lethal injection.
Nobody ever talks about what these guys did, to get on death row in the first place.
I think the objective was to kill him relatively painlessly. By that measure, it was a failure.
Such an unappreciative attitude!
Had that murderer been fed to hogs, they would have grunted a slobbery “Thanks!”
Hogs - Green executions done at a profit with never a ‘failure’.
A $0.25 12-gauge shotgun blast to the chest from a distance of about five feet would be instantaneous death and quite painless.
He shot his victim several times with a shotgun then buried her still alive.
No "shielding of the youth" either as they seem to be the ones behaving in ways that defy humanity!
Everyone who wants to "see justice" done for their family (no more 20 year "appeals process" either), kidnapped, raped, murdered, will feel some relief that the perps finally had their "day of reckoning."
Any good anesthesiologist could do this with no botches. Even a good Veterinary doc could with the same drugs they use to put down our aging and dying LOVED Pets. They feel no pain, just simply go to sleep, and never wake up.
A more pleasant way to go that this child went. IF you believe these animals should be removed make the call to our governor!
Ashley ‘Nikki’ Read, get the justice that 2 juries have handed down. ALL APPEALS have run out.
TN Gov email is firstname.lastname@example.org
This CHILD RAPIST HAS RUN OUT OF ALL 20 YRS OF APPEALS, TN GOV Halsam still has NOT SET AN EXECUTION DATE OR SIGNED A DEATH WARRANT, EMAIL HIM TO DO SO email@example.com 615 741-2001
This is 20 years of appeals. 24 YRS SINCE THE CRIME. TOOK ONLY THE DNA TO PROVE WHO DID IT, #1 SUSPECT. DNA & confession proved he raped, strangled to death with her OWN SHOE LACES 8 year old Ashley ‘Nicki’ Read and then threw her body in the river. Even helped hunt for what was thought to be a missing child.
They deliberately obfuscate the crimes committed. No one is allowed to know anything about the victim or what really happened. Then the pigs bleat over their favored monster of the moment. The media is pure evil.
For the last time...
The problem with the death penalty is the fact that if you make a mistake and execute the wrong person, its too late to correct it later.
There is also the issue of giving the folks we are so fond of here, namely, government officials, the power to terminate a life.
Power in the hands of the government is like matches in the fingers of a child.
So since Lockett’s victim was alive when he buried her, was her murder ‘botched’?
Kind of makes me think these are being botched on purpose...
These actions by the Left are not targeted at the American public.
They are targeted at weak-kneed state politicians, executives at drug companies, and the Judiciary.
If they can shut down the supply of drugs, or convince enough judges that using them is “cruel and unusual”, the politicians won’t have the stones to bring back firing squads or the electric chair.
Game, set, match. The Left gets what it wants. Despite the fact that the vast majority opposes it.
Did Obamacare teach us NOTHING?