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Death Justice: Rehnquist, Scalia, Thomas, and the Contradictions of the Death Penalty

NCJ Number
Kenneth W. Miller; David Niven
Date Published
246 pages
This book examines the U.S. Supreme Court's defense of the death penalty.
This book examines the 15-year period in which three conservative justices, beginning with the Thomas' nomination and ending with the death of Chief Justice Rehnquist, supported a collective forceful defense of the death penalty. The opinions and dissents of Rehnquist, Scalia, and Thomas disused during this period provide essential support in both the political and legal systems for the continued existence and imposition of the death penalty today. Chapter 1 introduces the concept of consistency as the foundation of the rule of law. Chapter 2 discusses the evolution of modern death penalty jurisprudence as the Court has weighed the acceptable and applicability of the sentence. Chapter 3 examines the eighth amendment's prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment, and its effective meaning given the Court's rulings. Chapter 4 discusses the role of federalism and States' rights. Chapter 5 examines the conclusions Rehnquist, Scalia, and Thomas have briefed regarding jurors. Chapter 6 examines the influence of Rehnquist, Scalia, and Thomas through Supreme Court decisions and lower court decisions. Chapter 7 examines the cultural foundations and cultural implications of Rehnquist, Scalia, and Thomas' arguments. Bibliography and index of cases cited