Obama to seek review over botched Okla execution


McClatchy Washington Bureau

President Barack Obama said Friday he plans to ask U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder for an analysis of how the U.S. puts convicted criminals to death, calling a botched lethal injection in Oklahoma this week “deeply troubling.”

Obama said he supports the death penalty for “certain circumstances in which a crime is so terrible,” including mass killings and the deaths of children. But he noted there has been “significant problems” with carrying out the death penalty in the U.S., including racial bias, uneven application and situations in which there were individuals on death row who later were found innocent because of exculpatory evidence.

“All these I think do raise significant questions about how the death penalty is being applied,” said Obama, who was asked about the case during a press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Obama said he’d talk with Holder and other officials for an analysis of what steps have been taken in the area of executions.

“I think we do have to, as a society, ask ourselves some difficult and profound questions around these issues,” he said.

The American Civil Liberties hailed Obama’s remarks, saying it was encouraged he mentioned “not only the cruelty of lethal injection but also the racial disparities in death sentences.”

“ The ACLU has long believed that we must end America’s unjust and discriminatory use of capital punishment,” said Laura Murphy, director of the group’s Washington legislative office. “We look forward to working with the Attorney General on the President’s mandate."

Read more Politics Wires stories from the Miami Herald

  • Dem chair to US House nominee: he should withdraw

    The head of Mississippi's Democratic Party says he has advised the party's nominee to pull out of the 1st District congressional race because exaggeration of his military service — calling himself a "Green Beret veteran of Desert Storm" when he was a food service worker at Fort Bragg during the 1991 campaign in Iraq — has cost him support.

  • Complaint against council candidate is too late

    The Hawaii County clerk won't evaluate a complaint that a Council candidate isn't qualified to represent the Puna district because she claimed a homeowner's property tax exemption on a Hilo home.

  • Jenkins faces tea party challenger in Kansas 2nd

    Kansas congresswoman Lynn Jenkins faces a Republican primary tea party challenger who accuses her voting to allow the indefinite detention of American citizens.

Miami Herald

Join the

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category