07
Sep
13

Compromise Kept Court From Abolishing Death Penalty

At the end of his gripping new book, A Wild Justice, Evan Mandery shows how tantalizingly close the Supreme Court came to ending the death penalty. The missed opportunities began in the 1960s and recurred over two decades. More than once the court really did come within a hair of banning executions. Instead, since 1976, when the court allowed capital punishment to go back into effect after a brief ban, the states have executed about 1,300 people. If you think that number sounds shockingly high, you should read Mandery’s revelations about the roads almost taken by the court.

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