Will Wisconsin Repeal Its Death-Penalty Ban?

Troy Davis' execution may prompt calls for a repeal of a state ban on the death penalty, writes Eugene Kane of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

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Protesters before Troy Davis' execution (Getty Images)

In his column at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Eugene Kane expresses concern that a new Republican majority in Wisconsin may bring calls for a repeal of the state's 150-year-old ban on the death penalty. After all, he says, they've already limited collective bargaining for public unions, passed a restrictive photo-ID law and introduced concealed-carry gun laws, among other things.

We haven't had a death penalty in Wisconsin for 150 years, which is a point of pride for some people who like what it says about our reputation as a progressive sort of state.

Wisconsin residents did vote overwhelmingly in favor of reinstituting the death penalty in 2006 in a nonbinding referendum. 

As some will remember, that was way back when Democrats controlled the Assembly and Jim Doyle was governor.

Under a Democratic majority, any plans for a new death penalty were basically dead on arrival, no pun intended.

With all the fuss over the execution of Georgia inmate Troy Davis last week, it's a safe bet those looking to revisit the death penalty for the Dairyland were paying close attention.

Read Eugene Kane's entire column at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

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