June 25, 2008

Here's Obama's response to the Supreme Court decision which struck down the death penalty for the rape of a child.

Democrat Barack Obama says he disagrees with the Supreme Court's decision outlawing executions of people convicted of raping a child.

Obama told reporters Wednesday that he thinks the rape of a child, ages six or eight, is a heinous crime. He said if a state makes a decision, then the death penalty is potentially applicable.

Digby says:

I get why he said it. Everybody's petrified of being "gotcha'd" like Dukakis on the rape question. But this one isn't hard. All he had to say was that as a father he would certainly want to kill anyone who did such a heinous thing with his bare hands, but as a public servant and legal scholar he knows that the death penalty should be reserved for people who kill...read on

It seems to me that he's running much farther to the right then he has to. I know he doesn't want to be portrayed as "soft on crime," but he could have approached it in any number of ways other than disagreeing with a wingnut Supreme Court that voted against this.

Lindsey Bernstein says:

If we're going to have a death penalty, and if the death penalty is reserved for the most heinous crimes, then rape should be punishable by death. Does Obama think that the rapists who sodomized prisoners at Abu Ghraib with chemical lights should be put to death? Given his views on child rape, I should hope so. Consistency requires him to call for the executions of the American soldiers who committed these crimes. If he's not serious about putting all rapists to death, he is trivializing rape by calling for the death penalty only for those who rape children.

If you're going to support the death penalty for child rape alone, you need to explain why child rapes are so morally special compared to the rapes of adult human beings.

The only morally consistent "law and order" position for Obama would be to assert that rape should be punishable by death, across the board...read on

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