The United States Law Week

Death Penalty Gets Lift From Barr, Trump-Appointed Justices

July 26, 2019, 12:00 PM

The death penalty, which only recently had appeared headed for extinction in the U.S., may be poised for a resurgence.

Attorney General William Barr said July 25 the federal government will resume executions in December after a 16-year hiatus. The announcement followed a Supreme Court term that indicated an increasing receptiveness toward capital punishment now that President Donald Trump’s two appointees are on the bench.

William Barr
Photographer: Kevin Dietsch/Pool via Bloomberg

In 2015 the death penalty was under so much pressure that then-Justice Antonin Scalia said he “ wouldn’t be surprised” if his colleagues outlawed it. Scalia, a conservative who viewed the death penalty as...

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