President-elect Joe Biden is against the execution and may work to end its use, his spokesman said Saturday, because the Department of Justice scheduled three more federal executions during before the Jan. 20 inauguration, including two shortly before he’s set to require office.
The Bureau of Prisons on Thursday administered the eighth federal execution this year, after a 17-year hiatus, and it’s likely to increase pressure on Biden decide whether his administration would still schedule executions once he’s sworn in. Advocacy groups have called on the Trump administration to pause all executions until Biden takes office.
Biden “opposes the execution now and within the longer term ,” press secretary TJ Ducklo said. He didn’t say whether executions would be paused immediately once Biden takes office.
Read also: Biden Describes President Trump as ‘The Most Irresponsible President in US History’
Federal executions resumed this year despite the coronavirus pandemic that has killed quite 250,000 people and is raging inside the nation’s prison systems.
This year, the Department of Justice has put to death more people than during the previous half-century, despite waning public support from both Democrats and Republicans for its use.
In a court filing Friday night, the department said it had been scheduling the executions of Alfred Bourgeois for Dec. 11 and Cory Johnson and Dustin Higgs for Jan. 14 and 15.
Two other executions had been scheduled for this year, including the first woman set to be executed by the federal in about six decades. But on Thursday, a federal judge ruled that execution couldn’t proceed before the top of the year.
Prosecutors say Bourgeois tortured, sexually molested, then beat to death his 2 1/2-year-old daughter to death.
Follow us on Twitter: @oyogist