- The Washington Times - Friday, July 26, 2019

Rep. Ayanna Pressley is set to introduce a bill that would prevent the Justice Department from reinstating the death penalty.

Just 70 words long, the bill would “prohibit the use of the death penalty for any violation of federal law, and for other purposes” and require the resentencing of anyone slated to receive the death penalty.

“The death penalty has no place in a just society,” the Massachusetts Democrat tweeted Thursday.

The Justice Department approved a new death penalty protocol to carry out executions, officials announced Thursday, saying the move clears the way for the first federal execution since 2003.

Ms. Pressley denounced the decision Thursday, calling it “cruelty.”

“The same #racist rhetoric coming from the occupant of the @WhiteHouse, who called for the execution of the #Exonerated5, is what led to this racist, vile policy. It was wrong then and it’s wrong now,” she tweeted. “The cruelty is the point - this is by design,” she said, referring to the five black teens who were exonerated years later after being accused of raping a white jogger in New York’s Central Park.

Attorney General William P. Barr said in a statement Thursday that five inmates are on death row who have been convicted for crimes committed against children.

“Congress has expressly authorized the death penalty through legislation adopted by the people’s representatives in both houses of Congress and signed by the President,” Mr. Barr said.

“Under Administrations of both parties, the Department of Justice has sought the death penalty against the worst criminals, including these five murderers, each of whom was convicted by a jury of his peers after a full and fair proceeding. The Justice Department upholds the rule of law — and we owe it to the victims and their families to carry forward the sentence imposed by our justice system.”

Alex Swoyer contributed to this article.

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