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State Rep. Orwall sponsors bill to repeal death penalty
State Rep. Tina Orwall, D-Des Moines, is one of the sponsors of House Bill 1504 to repeal the death penalty in Washington in favor of a sentence of life imprisonment without possibility of release or parole.
Orwall issued a joint statement Tuesday with Reps. Reuven Carlyle, D-Seattle and Maureen Walsh, R-Walla Walla on the bill:
“At a time when our state is striving to come together on major policy issues we feel there is meaningful value in uniting behind our shared conviction that life has value and that the death penalty is below us as a civilized society. We respect and acknowledge the political environment in Olympia does not welcome this issue on the agenda this year. And yet, nonetheless, we feel compelled to stand together, to speak out together, to encourage our colleagues to join us in elevating the dialogue about this profoundly important moral issue.
"We believe the death penalty is immoral, unfairly implemented, and appeals to society's most violent instincts rather than love and compassion. And it is financially draining, as we expend far more on the appeals process for death row inmates than lifetime incarceration. As we weep in pain for victims of horrific, unimaginable crimes, we also hope and pray that one day our state will join a community of states and nations to eliminate this unwise policy."
Senate Bill 5372 is a companion bill to end the death penalty sponsored by several senators, including Sen. Karen Keiser, D-Kent.