|NEIL GORSUCH - USA SUPREME COURT JUSTICE |
(his position was a sabotage by Donald John Trump, GOPs & 3 DEMs)
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Friday, April 21, 2017
NEIL GORSUCH provided 5-4 Vote to execute Ladell Lee - His first vote
On Thursday night, Arkansas executed Ledell Lee—the state’s first execution in 12 years. Lee is one of eight men whom Arkansas originally planned to kill over 11 days before one drug in the three-drug lethal injection cocktail expires. Four of these men have received stays of execution, but Lee’s final plea to the U.S. Supreme Court was rejected by a 5–4 vote. Justice Neil Gorsuch cast the deciding vote allowing Lee to die. It was his first recorded vote cast as a justice of the court.
Lee insisted upon his innocence from the day of his arrest through the night of his execution. He implored Arkansas to let him take a DNA test and compare the results to DNA collected at the scene of the murder he allegedly committed, but the state refused. Lee also presented evidence that his trial attorney provided ineffective assistance of counsel and that the presiding judge lacked neutrality: At the time, the judge was having an undisclosed affair with the assistant prosecutor. (They later married.) Lee’s counsel on appeal appeared in court so drunk that he slurred his words. Moreover, Lee asserted that Arkansas’ use of midazolam to render him unconscious before stopping his heart was cruel and unusual in violation of the Eighth Amendment: The drug may not actually induce unconsciousness and has caused other executions to go terribly awry.
But the Supreme Court split 5–4 on the Eighth Amendment question, with Gorsuch joining the conservatives in permitting Lee’s execution to move forward. Justices Stephen Breyer and Sonia Sotomayor dissented separately, each tackling a facet of Lee’s Eighth Amendment claim. Breyer repeated his now-familiar refrain that capital punishment itself is unconstitutional, highlighting Arkansas’ planned execution spree as evidence. “Arkansas set out to execute eight people over the course of 11 days,” Breyer wrote. “Why these eight? Why now?” He continued: