USA. DPIC'S NEW POLL AND REPORT SHOWS AMERICA BECOMING MORE DISTANT FROM THE DEATH PENALTY
June 9, 2007:
Because of mistakes and a lack of efficacy, the death penalty is losing the confidence of the American public, according to a new poll and report issued by the Death Penalty Information Center.Â Nearly 40% of the American public believes they would be disqualified from serving on death penalty juries because of their moral beliefs. The percentage is even higher among minorities and women.Â
The report, based on a poll by RT Strategies, found that a majority (58%) of the American population believe it is time for a moratorium on the death penalty while the process undergoes a careful review.Â Sixty percent (60%) of the public believes the death penalty is not a deterrent to murder. Nearly all Americans (87%) believe that an innocent person has already been executed in recent years, and over half (55%) say that fact has affected their views on the death penalty. An overwhelming 69% of the public believes that reforms will not eliminate all wrongful convictions and executions. DPIC analyzes the poll results in a new report, A Crisis of Confidence: Americans' Doubts About the Death Penalty.
"Public confidence in the death penalty has clearly eroded over the past 10 years, mostly as a result of DNA exonerations. Whether it is concern about executing the innocent, beliefs that the death penalty is not a deterrent, moral objections to taking human life, or a general sense that the system is too broken to be fixed, the bottom line is the same: Americans are moving away from the death penalty," said Richard Dieter, DPIC's Executive Director.
The poll sample included 1,000 adults nationwide and the margin of error was +3.1%. (Sources: DPIC, 09/06/2007)