Yesterday Colorado’s House of Representatives voted to approve a bill that would eliminate the death penalty in Colorado.
The bill passed by one vote and will now move on to the Senate for approval.
The bill proposes eliminating executions in our state and using that money instead to fund a cold case unit in the Colorado Bureau of Investigations.
According to a Denver Post article, House Majority Leader Paul Weissman said Colorado has executed only one convict in the last 40 years, during which more than 1,000 homicides have gone unsolved in the state.
Additionally, Weissman said, more than $800,000 would be left over every year even after the state funds the cold case unit.
While proponents see the bill as opportunity to eliminate a costly form of cruel and unusual punishment, opponents say the bill limits a legitimate tool of law enforcement officers and prosecutors.
The moral issues surrounding the death penalty tend to fiercely divide debaters, and with compelling arguments on both sides, we at the Collegian were no exception.
Although we were unable to come to a consensus on the morality of the eliminating the death penalty, we do feel that, particularly in these trying times of monetary insecurity, anything that can save the state money is responsible.
As Colorado sits in an electric chair of massive budget shortfalls, saving over $800,000 dollars a year can do nothing but help our current situation. While that sum may be insignificant compared to the almost $20 billion at play in the budget, it’s still a step in the right monetary direction.