2016 Bills

SB 189: Repealing The Death Penalty In Utah

This bill passed the Senate 15-12 but was not considered by the House.

Libertas Institute supports this bill.

We have written extensively about the problems associated with the death penalty in our policy brief and recent op-ed. It is too costly, it is inefficient, and it does not promote good public safety. Instead, it siphons money from more important criminal justice priorities in order to fund what has essentially become expensive retribution. It would be wise policy to stop seeking the death penalty.

Senate Bill 189, sponsored by Senator Steve Urquhart, would repeal the death penalty in Utah. For all crimes prosecuted after May 10th, 2016, the state could not seek the death penalty in applicable capital murder cases. Instead, these defendants would face the same penalty as most murder suspects–life in prison, including life without the possibility for parole. A fiscal analysis in Utah showed the aggregate marginal cost for seeking the death penalty over life in prison was as much as $1.7M. This means that state could save nearly $2M for each case in which the state forgoes seeking the death penalty. That savings would go right back into the local county budgets for higher priority public safety expenditures. When retribution costs that much, we need to rethink our policy.

  • Jae

    1. Who says the motive is retribution? –> that is an ‘appeal to motive logical fallacy.’

    1a. Also how could the ‘state’ even possess a ‘motive’? do other non living entities have emotions? does a car get sad when you take the other car?…the ‘state’ = not a person = no emotions involved…

    2. Do you know why the Lord instituted the death penalty?
    Genesis 9:12 (JST) And whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed; for man shall not shed the blood of man.

    2a. Can you explain who the death penalty benefits?
    –>I would submit that the death penalty is for the benefit of the murderer himself, to obtain a better resurrection…when the sin has been a sin unto death.

    3. The government itself is too costly and inefficient…let’s scrap the whole government…

  • dudleysharp3

    That is not, at all what the cost study showed.

    Far from it.

    I suspect you do not fact check.

  • dudleysharp3


    As you have demonstrated, they don’t think, but just parrot.


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