Medellin: It’s About the Death Penalty

by Peggy McGuinness

As the early analysis starts to pour in on the Supreme Court’s Medellin opinion, I did a quick scan of the headlines. As I have argued here and here, the case is, at bottom, about the persistence of the death penalty in the U.S. and the efforts of close allies and neighbors of the U.S. to do something about it. Check out the early headlines, which reflect the centrality of the case to the death penalty and immigration debates:

US High Court Denies Hearing to Death Row Mexicans (Bloomberg)
Court rules against Bush, Mexican on Death Row (Reuters)
Supreme Court overrules Bush, OKs Texas execution (CNN)
Bush Overruled in Death Penalty Dispute (ABC)

Of course, there are the inevitable Texas-themed headlines:

Court doesn’t mess with Texas; denies new trial (Baltimore Sun)

As we read and watch the news coverage of the case, it will be interesting to count the uses of the word “Mexican,” “immigrant,” “murder,” and “death penalty.” And “World Court,” which sounds so much more ominous than “International Court of Justice.”

http://opiniojuris.org/2008/03/25/medellin-its-about-the-death-penalty/

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