July 27, 2022 – The former president’s claims contradict decades of research and data on the death penalty. Numerous studies have debunked the notion that capital punishment deters people from engaging in criminal behavior, as well as the argument that longer prison sentences reduce crime.

“We’re very hard pressed to find really strong evidence of deterrence,” Columbia Law School professor Jeffrey Fagan said in 2014 regarding the death penalty. 

Some studies have demonstrated that the abolition of the death penalty would be far more effective in reducing violent crime. One study from 2019 showed that murder rates actually tended to decline in countries after capital punishment statutes were abolished.

Sentencing people accused of drug-related crimes to death is also a violation of international law. Several United Nations bodies have stated that the death penalty should only be used for the “most serious crimes” — a standard that doesn’t include drug crimes, Amnesty International has pointed out.


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