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The Champion

August 2003 , Page 04 

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NACDL News: Comments lead NACDL to oppose nomination of Alabama AG to federal bench

By Daniel Dodson

Read more NACDL News columns.

NACDL has voiced its opposition to the nomination of Alabama Attorney General William Pryor to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.

In a June 10 letter to Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and ranking Democratic member Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), President Lawrence S. Goldman expresses concern that Pryor’s stated views on the capital punishment system “bear directly on [his] ability to impartially consider direct and collateral appeals in death penalty cases.”

For instance, according to the letter, Pryor, in response to the Judiciary Committee’s follow-up questions after his testimony on the Innocence Protection Act, stated that appeals “are crucial only for Monday-morning quarterbacks who try to second-guess things and create issues that are probably not real in the first place.”

The letter also cites Pryor’s obliviousness to problems with Alabama’s death penalty system, where more than one-fifth of defendants lack counsel for collateral review, an

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