Home Store In Memoriam Deborah Newsletter Forum Topics Blogfeed Blogroll Facebook MySpace Contact Us About

Laura Ingraham has to argue the hypothetical

Reported by Chrish - June 25, 2008 -

Laura Ingraham resorted again to "what if" arguing in a segment discussing the Supreme Court's decision today 6/25/08 that said child-rapists may not be subjected to the death penalty. Mark Klaas, father of rape and murder victim Polly Klaas, (whose murderer is on death row) and Ingraham tag-teamed Richard Dieter of the Death Penalty Info Center. When he wouldn't budge from his stance, Ingraham asked him the "tough" question, what if his daughter was brutally, and she means brutally, raped and murdered?

Ingraham, a lawyer and former Supreme Court clerk, was dripping contempt for the Justices in the majority, whom she repeatedly mentioned are unelected, thereby unaccountable to the opinion or wishes of the majority. (Yes, thank the Founders for that bit of wisdom.)

Dieter explained that the courts have established a bright line for the death penalty, and however heinous this crime (child rape) is to all of us, it is different from a murder case. Unable to argue that, Ingraham turned to Klaas and wondered what the Framers would think of where we are right now - another tactic of hers, speculating on the completely unknowable yet pretending to know; funny how it always comes down on her side. She railed about how, with a stroke of a pen, these unelected, elite judges can rule out the will of the people, which they see as "beyond the evolving sense of decency" in this country. What she thinks is indecent is what the court does to the people of this country, and people (her listeners, FOX viewers) are getting fed up. Klaas thinks it's indecent that only 50 of 3,000 death row inmates have been executed recently.

Dieter tried to agree, that the death penalty does not serve the victims, 99%... Ingraham cut him off, unfortunately, to demand "if your daughter were (sic) brutally raped, and I mean brutally raped, repeatedly, what would you do Richard?" In a mocking voice she asked if he would say "the evolving standards of decency, I really think we need to ove beyond this callous punishment..." Dieter replied that his emotions would probably want that person strangled in front of him, but that's why we have the Eighth Amendment. If we apply the death penalty when we feel like it, we go down a slippery slope. Ingraham objected to that characterization, but he reminded her that she asked about his wishes in one personal instance, and the Court has the best interest of the entire country.

When Klaas brought up the incalculable harm and long-term damage caused by child rapists, Dieter agreed we need to give them life without parole. Ingraham objected, saying (incorrectly) that that's more expensive, and when Dieter corrected her, she blamed "people like your organization" who fight the death penalty for its expense. He reminded the attorney/host that defense lawyers are bound to go through the appeals process, which she seemed contemptuous of, wanting "the people" to be able to carry out their punishments without multiple Habeus appeals. The SCotUS could make it easier if they just came out and said "the death penalty is un-Constitutional" because clearly, in her mind, they (those five) think so.

It was a two-against-one segment, with one of the two controlling the direction. Fair and balance, FOX-style. Dieter did a pretty good job, despite being outnumbered and overtalked and interrupted repeatedly, but the overwhelming sense of the segment was anti-Court, pro-death.