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Ballot Box Not End The Battle Over Death Penalty

Sacramento, CA — California should not expect the final vote tally to stop the court challenges regarding the death penalty fight.

The battle over the state’s death penalty is not likely to be resolved at the ballot box. Opponents of capital punishment have filed a lawsuit with the state Supreme Court to block Proposition 66, a ballot measure that would speed up executions. Legal experts consider it just the first volley in what could be a long legal battle if the measure becomes law. At last count, the proposition was passing with 51 percent of voters approving it. There remain millions of outstanding votes, making it too close to call on Friday. Voters shot down a death penalty repeal measure that was also on the ballot.

Death penalty supporters reject the court challenge filed Wednesday calling it a frivolous stall tactic by lawyers trying to thwart the will of voters. The court petitioners claim the reforms would disrupt the courts, cost more money and limit the ability to mount proper appeals.