Conservative Leaders Call for Moratorium On Death Penalty, Cite Recent Poll

A group of conservative leaders gathered at the capitol Wednesday to request a moratorium on the death penalty.

Wednesday, February 22nd 2023, 8:47 pm



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A group of conservative leaders gathered at the capitol Wednesday to request a moratorium on the death penalty.

They cited a recent survey they conducted asking 500 registered voters about the death penalty.  

“I’ve told the Attorney General’s office, the District Attorneys, we are willing to work with them, we have to come up with a solution. You cannot look at our justice system today and say that it is a perfect system, and we don’t need to make any more changes, changes must be made,” said Kevin McDugle, a Republican House Representative.   

Community leaders said a survey done in January of this year showed many Oklahomans do not support the death penalty.  

“The poll that we conducted found that the citizens of Oklahoma prefer some version of a life sentence over the death penalty 52% to 36%. Our poll found that 78% of Oklahoma citizens support pausing executions or issuing a moratorium. This is also true for 75% of Republicans,” said Demetrius Minor, the National President for Conservatives Concerned About The Death Penalty.  

“Our next scheduled execution is for a man that has had 9 execution dates and 3 last meals. He was hours away from being executed in 2016 when we realized that we had the wrong drug in the room, this needs to stop,” said Adam Luck, a former Chairmen on the Oklahoma Pardon & Parole Board.  

Minor, a death penalty critic, discussed the risk of Oklahoma executing an innocent person.  

“History has shown us that there is a very real risk that Oklahoma could execute an innocent person. At least ten men have been wrongfully convicted and sentenced to die here in Oklahoma,” he said. 

Leaders also pointed to what they call conservative values. 

“It is an extreme use of state power, deeply at odds with our limited government beliefs and it doesn’t align with our consistency of life ethics,” said Minor. 

We interviewed Attorney General Gentner Drummond back in January when he asked to extend the period between executions and he said, “execution of any individual is a solemn event and it is the highest and strongest exercise of the state’s power and it is not to be taken lightly.” 

We did reach out to the Attorney General for comment on this call to action and have not heard back. 

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