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Ex-governors of California push for death penalty reform




Anti-death penalty campaigners stage a demonstration and march outside the Federal Bulding in Los Angeles on September 28, 2010.
Anti-death penalty campaigners stage a demonstration and march outside the Federal Bulding in Los Angeles on September 28, 2010.
MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images

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Former California Governors Gray Davis, George Deukmejian and Pete Wilson are announcing an effort today to place a death penalty reform initiative on the statewide ballot.

The initiative would reform the appeals process for death row inmates and change what these prisoners do while behind bars. If approved, it could mean big changes for the more than 700 inmates now on death row.

On a 2012 ballot, 53 percent of California voters rejected an initiative that would have repealed the death penalty.

Nonetheless, executions have been halted since 2006 because of lawsuits in federal and state courts over the three-drug lethal-injection method that had been used to carry out death sentences.

Here to discuss the current state of capital punishment in California is Ellen Kreitzberg, professor of law at Santa Clara University.