Death penalty? Not so much

Among some pretty dramatic trendlines in American politics, the drop in support for the death penalty is really something to behold, too.  The latest from Gallup:

1

Now, that’s still a clear majority, but dropping from 80% to 55% support in just over two decades really is something.  Presumably, we can thank 1) the declining crime rate, and 2) the attention to all the innocent people released from death row thanks to DNA testing.

What’s most notable about the recent decline is that it is not all led by Democrats, but increasing numbers of Republicans appear to be questioning the death penalty as well:

2

Will definitely be interesting to see how this trend develops in the next few years with Mr. “American carnage” in the White House and driving the Republican electorate.

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About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/shgreene

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