St. Louis Public Radio News
9:31 am
Thu April 3, 2003

Death Penalty Abolishment Effort Dies in Illinois

Springfield, Ill. – Illinois' death penalty has been spared.

The sponsor of legislation to abolish capital punishment say he doesn't have the votes, so he's abandoning his efforts for the time being. Chicago Representative Arthur Turner says there's no reason to put lawmakers in a politically risky spot by holding a vote on a doomed bill.

But the Democrat says he still thinks life without parole is a more humane punishment. He says he'll work to reform the death penalty, but adds abolition is the only fail-safe solution.

In a speech on the House floor, Turner compared the death penalty to slavery. He says both are fundamental violations of
human rights.