Death penalty repeal is on the horizon for Washington state! Since 2014, Washington has been in a Governor imposed moratorium, and there have been calls from the Governor and Attorney General to pass repeal legislation. Excitingly, thanks to strong bipartisan efforts, the chance to defeat the death penalty is strong. This month two bills were filed in the House and Senate calling for an end to Washington’s death penalty. If the repeal bill passes in the Senate, it will move to the House for consideration. If both chambers vote to pass death penalty repeal then it will go to Governor Inslee to sign the bill into law.
The death penalty does not serve as a deterrent, it risks innocent lives and costs taxpayers millions of dollars more than life without parole. More importantly, it is an egregious act against the dignity of the human person and does not align with pro-life values. Ending the death penalty in Washington would be a win towards valuing all human life. As Washington senator Mark Miloscia said in his op-ed published in the Seattle Times last month, “This Catholic Republican is grateful to see my church and my party taking initiative on this life-or-death issue. It is time to pass a strong, bipartisan repeal of the death penalty.”
The legislative session in Washington this year is only 60 days, so things are moving quickly and we need to act now! If you live in Washington, here are three things you can do to help end your state’s death penalty:
Don’t live in Washington, but are looking for ways to get involved and end the death penalty? People of good will in every state can take a stand for life by signing the National Catholic Pledge to End the Death Penalty.
Washington isn't the only state that could end its death penalty this year. Louisiana and New Hampshire are gearing up for their own death penalty repeal campaigns.