Conservative Group Says Kentucky Could Repeal Death Penalty Within 5 Years

Apr 7, 2014

Republican Rep. David Floyd of Bardstown introduced legislation this year that sought to repeal the state's death penalty
Credit Kentucky LRC

A national conservative group says the effort to get rid of the death penalty in Kentucky is picking up substantial bipartisan support.  But legislation to repeal capital punishment failed to gain much traction in this year’s legislative session.

In the House, a bill to ban the death penalty was introduced by Republican David Floyd of Bardstown; in the Senate, Democrat Gerald Neal did the same. But neither piece of legislation received a hearing.  

Marc Hyden with the group “Conservatives Concerned About the Death Penalty”, says while progress may be slow, he says within five years, the death penalty could be gone in Kentucky.  He says it’s a rare issue on which Republicans and Democrats can work together.

Hayden rejects the notion that the death penalty is a deterrent.

“For every 100 murders, one of those results in a death sentence. So that’s one percent. Now, even fewer of that one percent actually are executed,” said Hyden.  “So you have to ask yourself, would you be deterred by a half a percentage of a chance of you being executed 20-30 years after you make a terrible crime.  I just don’t buy into that. There are no deterrent properties.”

Hyden says a growing number of conservatives oppose the death penalty because they think the justice system has its flaws.   He says they also worry about the cost of the death penalty program.

 Hyden spoke in Lexington Sunday at a conference of the Young Americans For Liberty.