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Bernie Sanders on the death penalty: The state shouldn’t be in the business of killing people

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Not since 1988 has a presidential candidate for a major political party declared themselves opposed to the death penalty. In announcing his run for the presidency, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has thrown down his gauntlet. During an appearance on “The Thom Hartmann Show” on May 1, a caller asked Sanders if he would end executions of the mentally ill. Sanders replied that he opposes all executions, offering a moral explanation for his position.

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CALLER: Execution of the mentally ill, I think […] I’d be more inclined to vote for you if you were to sign an executive order to stop or make a stay on executions of the mentally ill. I think the right wing is actually using that subliminally so that we be afraid of them. […]

SANDERS: Let me just give you an answer that I suspect not everybody will agree with. I am against capital punishment in general. I understand, and certainly for people who are mentally incapacitated who don’t know what they’re doing or what’s happening to them—I think people have been executed who were not even aware of what was going on, and that’s not something that a civilized nation should be engaged in. But in general, this is what I think. Look, there are people who commit horrendous, horrendous, horrendous crimes: we all know that. And we are furious at them, we can’t understand their barbarity. But I think, as with so much violence in this world today, I just don’t think the state itself, whether it’s the state government or federal government, should be in the business of killing people. So when you have people who have done terrible, terrible things they’re gonna spend the rest of their lives in jail, and that’s a pretty harsh punishment. But I’m against capital punishment.

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Polling on the death penalty has shifted rapidly in the past five years, from Democrats being evenly split on the issue to being opposed to it:

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Recall that former Secretary Clinton is a lifelong advocate of capital punishment.

 


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CNN’s Cuomo slams Trump advisers for attacking Fauci: ‘Why doesn’t Captain Carnage tell his sycophants to shut up?’

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On CNN Tuesday, Chris Cuomo slammed President Donald Trump's aides for attacking Dr. Anthony Fauci — and their boss for allowing it to continue despite knowing Fauci is correct.

"Trump knows Fauci is a trusted source," said Cuomo. "Given what just came out of his mouth, we have to ask why is he trying to destroy Fauci? And the answer is because Fauci keeps telling you the truth about COVID-19."

"If the president isn't behind it, why is his campaign pushing out a staffer like Stephen Moore, who is openly trying to smear Fauci's decades-long service?" said Cuomo. "The guy is supposed to be an economic analyst. What about this from Peter Navarro, another Trumper? Now he's a Fauci critic? These guys want to talk about being trustworthy and records of getting things wrong, and they work for Trump and never admit his legendary lies? And Dan Scavino, deputy chief of staff for communications, he posted this cartoon, mocking the top infectious disease specialist on his Facebook page as he calls him his colleague."

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CNN

Anderson Cooper tears into Trump for lying about coronavirus death rate: ‘This is just ludicrous’

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On CNN Tuesday, anchor Anderson Cooper led his show with a searing indictment of President Donald Trump for his ongoing lies about his management of the coronavirus pandemic.

Cooper particularly took umbrage at Trump's claim, at the day's Rose Garden press conference, that "we have just about the lowest mortality rate" and only seem to have more cases because "we do tremendous testing. We have the best testing in the world."

"This is just ludicrous," said Cooper. "This is the president of the United States. More than 130,000 people dead in this country and he's continuing this ridiculous lie, it's nonsensical. It defies any belief. We shouldn't be surprised because this is what he does. This is one of president's favorite lies. The United States is not the best or close to it in deaths — it's the seventh-worst in the world. The testing doesn't discover them. According to Redfield and others, the cases we know about are probably far underestimating the actual spread of this virus."

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CNN

Trump tried to create a ‘fairy tale’ of his pandemic leadership: CNN’s Acosta

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On Tuesday's edition of CNN's "The Situation Room," chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta broke down the significance of President Donald Trump's latest press conference.

"By and large ... what you heard the president talk about is essentially what he would have talked about had he been able to give that rally in New Hampshire last weekend," said Acosta. "He decided to have it here in the Rose Garden. When the press assembles here in the Rose Garden, we expect there to be a number of questions asked of the president. There were only three or four people called on before he raced out of here."

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