Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Gary Haugen and Gov. Kitzhaber: Enough!

From this article today in the Salem Statesman Journal we find that Marion Circuit Court judge is now determining whether Governor John Kitzhaber's "reprieve" is valid or invalid.

Whatever one thinks about the death penalty, in a state that allows assisted suicide, why can't this man be allowed to die?  The governor used some trumped up powers that he may or may not have the authority to use (this judges' decision may determine that) and has stopped all executions in Oregon because he is "morally" against them.  

I'm pretty sure the Constitution says something about "cruel and unusual punishment" and although I don't have a lot of sympathy for a twice convicted murderer, I do have some sympathy for Gary Haugen who not once, not twice but three times was preparing himself for the gurney trip to the needle only to be pulled back at the last minute, and if that's not "cruel and unusual" I don't know what is.  Haugen argues that he has not accepted the reprieve, as he said he is entitled to do under previous Oregon Supreme Court cases. He also said the governor’s order has no fixed ending date, unlike reprieves issued by previous governors, and the governor has exceeded his authority under the law.  Does everyone realize that the Governor did not have the moral conviction to "commute" all of the death sentences?  No, his moral outrage only allowed him to kick the can down the street until the next governor takes office.

My question, leading up to this judge's decision: if the judge decides that Kitzhaber's "reprieve" is invalid, will the Governor and Attorney General continue to use taxpayer money to pursue his "moral objections", or will he just let this end?  Will he take this "fight" all the way AGAIN to the Oregon Supreme Court?  I say "ENOUGH"!  Quit wasting my money on this crusade and let the man die!

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