NAACP Influential in MD Death Penalty Repeal
March 15th, the NAACP celebrated as the Maryland House of Delegates decided to repeal the Death Penalty. The repeal bill passed with a vote of 82 to 56. The Maryland Senate has already passed the bill. With Maryland, six states have repealed the death penalty in the last six years and Maryland becomes the first state under the Mason-Dixon Line to repeal the death penalty.
President and CEO of the NAACP, Benjamin Jealous, expressed his sentiments after the victory:
“Today we accomplished a milestone that the Maryland NAACP has worked toward for more than a century,” stated Benjamin Todd Jealous, President and CEO of the NAACP. “Thank you to Governor O’Malley, Lt. Governor Brown, and the bill sponsors and supporters in the House and Senate that showed the backbone and moral clarity to end this injustice. Tomorrow we will wake up in a state where we will never again have to worry if someone is put to death because of their color, class or in spite of their innocence.”
Although Maryland represents a huge victory in the road to abolishing the Death Penalty in the United States, the NAACP is already working in Colorado and Delaware where legislation to repeal the death penalty was introduced this week.