The republican party, conservatives, and the future of capital punishment

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    5 Scopus citations


    The United States has experienced a significant decline in the death penalty during the first part of the twenty-first century, as death sentences, executions, public support, and states with capital punishment all have declined. Many recent reforms banning or placing a moratorium on executions have occurred in blue states, in line with the notion that ending the death penalty is a progressive cause. Challenging this narrative, however, is the emergence of Republican lawmakers as champions of death penalty repeal legislation in red states. This Article puts these efforts by Republican lawmakers into historical context and explains the conservative case against the death penalty: its incompatibility with limited government, fiscal responsibility, and promoting a culture of life. Understanding Republican opposition to capital punishment takes on particular importance now following setbacks to efforts against the death penalty in the 2016 election. In this environment, building support among Republicans and conservatives likely will prove critical for taking further steps toward limiting and eventually ending the death penalty in the United States.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number1
    Pages (from-to)223-252
    Number of pages30
    JournalJournal of Criminal Law and Criminology
    Issue number2
    StatePublished - 2018

    All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

    • Law


    Dive into the research topics of 'The republican party, conservatives, and the future of capital punishment'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this