Conservatives Concerned About the Death Penalty


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Michael Stone

(434) 960-7779

What Virginia Conservatives and Libertarians are Saying

“Conservatives have every reason to believe the death penalty system is no different from any politicized, costly, inefficient, bureaucratic, government-run operation, which we conservatives know are rife with injustice. But here the end result is the end of someone’s life. In other words, it’s a government system that kills people.”

Richard Viguerie, Advisor to President Ronald Reagan

“If you believe that the government always ‘gets it right,’ never makes serious mistakes, and is never tainted with corruption, then you can be comfortable supporting the death penalty. I no longer have such faith in the government and, therefore, cannot and do not support the death penalty.”

Mark Earley, Former Virginia Attorney General

Source: “Mark Earley, former Virginia attorney general, now opposes death penalty,” Richmond Times-Dispatch, April 8, 2015.

“My fundamental problems with the death penalty began as a result of my personal concern, echoed by many on all sides of the political spectrum, that it was inconsistent for one to be ‘pro-life’ on the one hand and condone government execution on the other…Then came the talk of margin of error; the fact that in the course of business, the government had sentenced innocent people to death based on either just plain poor legal representation or discoveries obtained through advanced DNA technology.”

Christian Josi, Former Executive Director, American Conservative Union

Source: “Life locked away, not death,” Washington Times, Monday, June 25, 2001

“The death penalty is a relic; a supreme act of violence held in terror above those who cannot exercise it for themselves.  As a society of conscience, the supreme and intrinsic durability of our values is cheapened by the existence of the death penalty.  Our justification for violence action should be reserved as an ultimate act of self-defense in a time of war, not as an instrument of punishment to hold in terrorem over our fellow citizens.”

Shaun Kenney, Former Executive Director, Virginia Republican Party

“The United States government has perverted the relationship between the citizen and the State. We now have warrantless surveillance, militarized police and indefinite detention. How can a government that so easily disregards the fundamental principles that created it (and limited it) be trusted with questions of life and death? It can’t, and that is why I support Conservatives Concerned about the Death Penalty.”

Michael D. Ostrolenk, Co-Founder and National Director of the Liberty Coalition

“As someone who believes strongly in limiting the power and scope of government, I can’t in good conscience support a policy that gives the government the power to kill its citizens — particularly, when there are so many instances of the government getting it wrong. Sentencing just one innocent person to death is one person too many.”

Matthew Hurtt, Former Chairman, Arlington Falls Church Young Republicans

“The most important reason to oppose capital punishment was eloquently stated by Marquis de Lafayette, who wrote, “I shall ask for the abolition of the penalty of death, until I have the infallibility of human judgment demonstrated to me.” Our courts, judges, prosecutors and police are NOT infallible, by a long shot.”

Paul Jacob, President of Citizens in Charge

You can argue all day about whether putting someone to death is a just punishment. But what you cannot argue is that we implement this punishment without error. The death penalty is irreversible–you cannot bring an innocent person back from the dead. I am against the death penalty because too many innocent people have been put to death, and will continue to be put to death, unless we stop this punishment.

Grace Charlton, Former Chairwoman, University of Virginia chapter of Young Americans for Liberty

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