John Ashcroft on Crime

No racial bias in Garza execution nor in federal system

Convicted murderer Juan Raul Garza was executed Tuesday by lethal injection today. Garza’s and Timothy McVeigh’s deaths are the only two federal executions since 1963. Garza was sentenced to death for each of the murders under a federal “drug kingpin” statute.

John Ashcroft said there is no reason to spare Garza’s life. He said Garza was [found guilty] for three deaths and [was responsible for] five others -- including at least four murders in Mexico for which he was never prosecuted. Ashcroft also said there was no racial bias in the case, emphasizing the prosecutor was Hispanic, as were seven of the eight victims. The Department of Justice, as well, said a recently completed study found no racial bias in the federal system. Garza’s attorney John Howley strongly disagreed, saying “there’s no question that race plays a big part in every death sentence. The fact is we only give out the death penalty in this country to poor, to minorities, and to the mentally retarded,” he said.

Source: CNN.com Jun 19, 2001

Opposes any further delays in McVeigh’s execution

Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh is seeking to have his June 11 execution delayed. The execution was postponed after federal investigators disclosed they had failed to turn over thousands of pages of documents to McVeigh’s defense team. John Ashcroft said the Justice Department will vigorously oppose any attempt to force a new trial or overturn McVeigh’s sentence.

“When a fraud upon the court has been perpetrated, then any judgement that the court makes is void,” said McVeigh’s attorney. Another attorney insists that still-undisclosed documents would point to the involvement of others. Ashcroft says the documents contain useless information that poured into the FBI hotline after the April 19, 1995, bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah federal building, which killed 168 people. Ashcroft said, “Based on overwhelming evidence and McVeigh’s own repeated admissions, we know that he is responsible for this crime. We will continue to pursue justice by seeking to carry out the sentence.”

Source: Lynda Gorov, Boston Globe, p. A1 Jun 1, 2001

Oversaw 7 executions as Governor of Missouri

At Ashcroft’s appointment, President-Elect Bush said there was no reason to have a moratorium on the federal death penalty, and Ashcroft agreed. Ashcroft is a very strong supporter of the death penalty. Bush oversaw 152 executions in Texas as governor over the course of six years. Ashcroft said he has weighed the issues on this subject when he was governor of Missouri from 1984-92. Seven people were executed under Ashcroft, compared to 26 put to death under the late Democratic Gov. Mel Carnahan.
Source: ABCnews.com, “An Ashcroft Justice Department” Dec 23, 2000

Tougher school rules keep schools safe

Source: JohnAshcroft.org, campaign web site Nov 7, 2000

Voted NO on $1.15 billion per year to continue the COPS program.

Vote on an amendment to authorize $1.15 billion per year from 2000 through 2005 to continue and expand the Community Oriented Policing Services program. $600 million of the annual funding is marked for hiring additional officers [up to 50,000]
Bill S.254 ; vote number 1999-139 on May 20, 1999

Voted YES on limiting death penalty appeals.

Vote to table, or kill, a motion to send the bill back to the joint House-Senate conference committee with instructions to delete the provisions in the bill that would make it harder for prisoners given the death penalty in state courts to appeal
Bill S.735 ; vote number 1996-66 on Apr 17, 1996

Voted YES on limiting product liability punitive damage awards.

Approval of a limit on punitive damages in product liability cases.
Status: Conf Rpt Agreed to Y)59; N)40; NV)1
Reference: Conference Report on H.R. 956; Bill H. R. 956 ; vote number 1996-46 on Mar 21, 1996

Voted YES on restricting class-action lawsuits.

Restriction of class-action security lawsuits.
Status: Veto Overridden Y)68; N)30; P)1
Reference: H.R. 1058 passage over veto; Bill H.R. 1058 ; vote number 1995-612 on Dec 22, 1995

Voted YES on repealing federal speed limits.

Repeal federal speeding limits.
Status: Motion to Table Agreed to Y)64; N)36
Reference: Motion to table Lautenberg Amdt #1428; Bill S. 440 ; vote number 1995-270 on Jun 20, 1995

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Other candidates on Crime: John Ashcroft on other issues:
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Jim Talent
Kit Bond
Mel Carnahan
Nancy Farmer

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