Title: City Talk: David Kaczynski, New Yorkers Against the Death Penalty
Date: 2/15/2005
Notes: David Kaczynski, executive director of New Yorkers Against the Death Penalty, discusses the possibility of eliminating the death penalty in New York state.

MUZZIO: Hello, I'm Doug Muzzio. This is City Talk.

Consider the numbers. The number of people executed in Texas since the introduction of the electric chair 696 Texas thus breaks it tie with New York State long the capital of capital punishment.

The number of New York State residents who support the death penalty 34% down from 47% in 1994, according to a recent New York Times poll. Why the change? Will the death penalty die?

To talk about the death penalty, the principle, the practices, and the practicality is David Kaczynski, executive director of New Yorkers against the death penalty.

If the last name sounds familiar, it's because David is the brother of Ted Kaczynski, the Unabomber, convicted of a 20 year spree of death and injury through mail bombings.

David welcome.

How does the Unabomber brother become one of the foremost opponents of death penalty in the United States?

DAVID: Well, it's a long story. It began in 1995 when in my home, my wife Linda sat me down one day and said Dave, did you ever consider the possibility even the remote possibility?

DAVID: That your brother might be the Unabomber.

MUZZIO: Why would she raise that question with you?

DAVID: Oh wow, she's an intuitive lady. She's a very smart lady. She's been a college professor now for 36 years, but I don't think that explains it.

DAVID: She did notice some things in some of the articles that were being published about the Unabomber at the time.

MUZZIO: Right, and it was the manifesto.

DAVID: Well, the manifesto hadn't been published.

MUZZIO: Oh, that's right, that's subsequent.

DAVID: Yet, right?

MUZZIO: Go ahead, I'm.

DAVID: Sorry, well there was some sense that the Unabomber had come from Chicago, where we all grew up because the first bombs were planted.

DAVID: There and one of the bombs had actually been placed at a student lounge at the University of California at Berkeley, where my brother had previously been a math professor and now the the manifesto has been sent to the newspapers, and though it hasn't been published, there is some report that it's an anti technology manifesto, and though Linda.

DAVID: Had never met Ted, which makes this you know her.

DAVID: Intuition more startling, yet she knew through me that he had this this animus against technology and so she said, do you think it could be Ted?

MUZZIO: And your reaction was.

DAVID: No way.

DAVID: You know Ted was my older brother.

DAVID: We had grown up together.

DAVID: We shared a bedroom growing up as kids.

DAVID: I had certainly come to the view that he was suffering from mental illness and delusions, but I'd never seen any evidence of violence in him, not even once.

MUZZIO: OK, the questions posed in your reaction is no but.

MUZZIO: And it grows on, yeah.

DAVID: Well, basically I told Linda look if they ever published this manifesto I'll read it and I'll be able to tell you because I know how my brother thinks. I know how he writes that he didn't write that manifesto, so it really wasn't until we sat down and and saw it on the Internet for the first time and I was. I think I was all set to turn to and say, look how silly you have been and you know I just had this chilled feeling.

DAVID: Not necessarily that it was him, but that I couldn't rule out the possibility.

DAVID: At that point I thought maybe a very slim chance, maybe one in 1000? I mean the ideals weren't particularly original.

DAVID: It wasn't really until we sat down together and began comparing very carefully some letters.

MUZZIO: The content and analysis is.

DAVID: Yeah, letters that my brother had sent to me over the years, and.

DAVID: Not that we ever found a phrase that was conclusive, but I began to feel over a period of time I could almost hear his voice and then that in that manifesto.

MUZZIO: Right?

MUZZIO: And then you come to it.

MUZZIO: You have you now.

MUZZIO: You're facing a dilemma and you have to make a choice and you have to make a decision.

MUZZIO: And that is what and why.

DAVID: Yeah, you know, I remember the day I said to Linda, I think it might be a 5050 chance that Ted wrote it and you know, we're just is it him?

DAVID: Is it not him?

DAVID: You know what does this ask of us?

DAVID: What does it mean for our family?

DAVID: And Gee, it was as if like a pit had opened up in front of us.

DAVID: The the dilemma was was extraordinary in the sense that anything we did, any choice we made, whether it was to come forward or keep silent, could lead to somebody's death if we did nothing and Ted was the Unabomber, there was a chance some innocent person would be blown up killed.

DAVID: Named how do you live with that on your conscience?

DAVID: On the other hand, you know there was a death penalty.

DAVID: These were certainly qualified as capital crimes.

DAVID: We had to face the possibility that if we turned Ted in, he would he would be executed.

MUZZIO: And part of your decision to go to the authorities and to talk with them include.

MUZZIO: Did a promise from them that the death penalty would not be sought in the case?

MUZZIO: Could you actually talk about that?

DAVID: You know?

DAVID: It's it.

MUZZIO: I don't I, I'm

MUZZIO: Sure about that.

DAVID: Right, right?

DAVID: And it's kind of been reported that way, and that's really not quite accurate.

DAVID: Certainly one of the things that was on my mind as we considered how best to turn him in it.

DAVID: And believe me, this was a huge case. It's like I think at this point the most expensive criminal investigation in U.S. history.

MUZZIO: Oh, and then one of those cases that just captured the public imagination.

MUZZIO: I mean, son of Sam and the Unabomber.

MUZZIO: I mean there there are certain.

MUZZIO: Crimes that just resonate.

DAVID: We certainly didn't want things to spin out of control.

DAVID: We didn't want.

DAVID: You know, somebody.

DAVID: Even an FBI agent knocking on the door of his cabin where he was living out there in Montana.

DAVID: God forbid he die, or the agent dies.

DAVID: So so we knew we had to do this carefully, and one of the things that was certainly on my mind was the possibility.

DAVID: Could we get the death penalty?

DAVID: Off the table.

DAVID: And we consulted with an attorney whom we knew had had previous dealings with the FBI.

MUZZIO: And this is based on.

MUZZIO: I mean, obviously it's based on blood, but it's also chord in principle.

MUZZIO: I mean what describe your own motivations here?

MUZZIO: Why I mean why?

DAVID: Well, you know.

DAVID: It kind of goes back to our family values.

DAVID: I mean, both of us believe it or not.

DAVID: We're raised with this sense of you do the right thing that ethical principles really matter.

DAVID: They're really, really important.

DAVID: Linda, you know, had been a college professor, professor of philosophy.

DAVID: Among the courses she taught were courses in ethics.

MUZZIO: And this is this is this?

DAVID: Well was was applied ethics.

MUZZIO: This is a case that we probably used this as a case study and it clearly is yes.

DAVID: Yeah, they probably do now, yeah, and you know at this point in my life I was working in this youth shelter in Albany.

DAVID: Basically kids, most of whom had been crime victims, child abuse victims, some of which had gotten in whom had, you know, been in trouble with the law.

DAVID: And I remember many conversations I had with the kids about violence about solving things the right way, about being responsible about you know, protecting your friends in your community.

DAVID: It's easy to you know lecture someone else, but here I was facing that that dilemma myself.

MUZZIO: Right?

MUZZIO: OK, and then then how do you then become this anti death penalty advocate?

DAVID: I think you know it was really a wake up call for me to understand that the system doesn't work as most middle class people think it does.

DAVID: I really thought once we had begun to speak with the agents and they said, you know, we have known for a long time that the Unabomber is not a terrorist.

DAVID: It's a person with a serious mental illness.

DAVID: You know they told us about mental health treatments that were available in federal prisons.

DAVID: You know, I, I really thought this was a win win situation.

DAVID: That and they led us to believe that that we would turn Ted in.

DAVID: The violence would be stopped.

DAVID: Ted could perhaps get treatment for his mental illness.

DAVID: It was really upon his arrest that everything changed the promise.

DAVID: Actually, that was given to us is that our participation in.

DAVID: In turning him in would be kept totally confidential.

DAVID: No one would ever know, and that's obviously there was a leak.

MUZZIO: Right?

DAVID: You know on the day that Ted was arrested, there were media camped out on our doorstep, wondering why a family would turn in a, uh.

DAVID: One, so there was some sense of betrayal there that the system wasn't what we thought, but but I think what really bothered me the most.

DAVID: The biggest betrayal from my point of view was when the prosecution hired a forensic psychiatrist to evaluate my brother and I began to read up on this guy and understand that his.

DAVID: Job wasn't to find the truth.

DAVID: His job was to give him material exactly in fact.

MUZZIO: Come to a predetermined point, close right.

MUZZIO: That's why you.

MUZZIO: Hired policy experts and it turns.

DAVID: Unfortunately, this this guy actually was in the news just last month.

DAVID: He had been the same psychiatrist who testified against the woman in Texas.

DAVID: Andrea Yates, who had drowned her five children and apparently he gave false testimony on the stand and that caused, and this was another death penalty case, you know.

MUZZIO: Wait, wait.

DAVID: So so to me.

DAVID: I assumed you know Solomon would show up the system.

DAVID: The best system in the world would make sure that truth and justice was done.

DAVID: And instead I I realized, hey.

DAVID: This is about politics.

DAVID: It's about winning and losing, not about justice.

DAVID: Certainly there was this sense of irony from my point of view, our family had looked at the truth when the truth was.

DAVID: Extremely painful to look at and we came forward only in the best interests of protecting others.

DAVID: And here the system was not about that, it was about.

MUZZIO: Talk about New Yorkers against the death penalty and your role in it and where you are now.

MUZZIO: Let's and then let's.

MUZZIO: Talk about the.

MUZZIO: Poll, let's talk about the assembly hearings in your testimony, but talk about the.

MUZZIO: Context of all of this, what's different? I mean, let's look at the numbers you've gone from 47% favoring the death penalty in the times as reported on the February 15th on Tuesday.

MUZZIO: 56% said they prefer to either life in prison without parole or life in prison with the possibility.

MUZZIO: Of Pearl over.

MUZZIO: The death penalty.

MUZZIO: So the people of the state of.

MUZZIO: New York are.

MUZZIO: Essentially, not only opposed that they're opposed to the death penalty, and they prefer a life without parole.

MUZZIO: And that's not the first survey.

MUZZIO: An earlier Quinnipiac survey was very, very similar and also pointed out an interesting from a survey.

MUZZIO: Researchers point of view when you ask people are they in favor of the death penalty? 57% said yes, but when you said if you had a choice between the death penalty and life without parole, majority says no life without parole.

DAVID: I think it's a difference between theory and practice.

DAVID: I mean people.

DAVID: Well, think of the worst crime they can imagine and say should that person deserve to live.

DAVID: You know, maybe not.

DAVID: On the other hand, when people begin looking at the delivery system of how the death penalty is actually carried out, begin asking themselves the question, is it worth the you know, hundreds of millions of dollars we have been spending on it to no effect.

DAVID: Is it worth?

DAVID: You know the bias that we've seen in the application now.

DAVID: But you know 1995 is not 2005. A lot of things are different. I think the most compelling thing that's different is all of the stories of wrongful convictions.

DAVID: People, innocent people who were tried in a court of law sentenced to death by unanimously by a jury of their peers and ultimately.

DAVID: Found to be innocent.

MUZZIO: You were, I know you were at the December hearings of the the Assembly.

MUZZIO: And also testified in the January hearings in both of those hearings, there was some really wrenching testimony.

MUZZIO: Primarily, I mean all of the wrenching testimony was by death penalty opponents.

MUZZIO: Talk about these wrongful convictions, put some names and and and if not faces, thoughts to these cases of wrongful convictions.

DAVID: Yes, several people who had been wrongfully convicted came to the New York hearings.

DAVID: One was Juan Melendez, who had actually been convicted in Florida, spent 18 years there was, was totally innocent.

DAVID: In fact, you know the District Attorney in the case actually had evidence that could.

DAVID: Have exonerated him from day one, but since he'd already sort of gone down the path, got a capital indictment, you know he was so focused on winning that he allowed this guy, possibly even to be executed.

MUZZIO: And I and I.

MUZZIO: Then when I met you, the second for the second time, it was at the Hispanic Federation when he spoke, and I will tell you.

MUZZIO: I mean you.

MUZZIO: Can confirm these.

DAVID: Yeah, sure.

MUZZIO: They've had a room full of reporters and hard nosed political operatives in tears and and his description.

MUZZIO: Of what he went through for the death penalty.

MUZZIO: But there were.

MUZZIO: Other testimony not only from people who were wrongly convicted, but days and others who talked about it.

MUZZIO: Relate some of the most compelling testimony that you heard.

DAVID: Yeah, oh, Juan was tremendously compelling.

DAVID: I think the answer to that and and I think it's really a form of denial, is to say it can't.

DAVID: Happen in New York, you know, we're we're better than Florida.

DAVID: We're better than Texas or Mississippi, but there were several men who had spent long prison sentences in New York State who had been wrongfully convicted for many of the same reasons.

DAVID: We probably have a better system than Texas.

DAVID: It's not a perfect system to me.

DAVID: That was very compelling.

DAVID: And there was a warden from Sing, Sing a guy by the name of Steve Dahl Shine, who had been at Sing Sing when 20 individuals were executed there prior to 1963, and he is totally convinced that some of them were innocent. And certainly there was no rhyme or reason who got the death penalty and who didn't it was.

DAVID: It was other factors, not that.

MUZZIO: Take a few moments to give us a very brief history of the death penalty in New York State, up to the current day.

MUZZIO: So I I understand where we are.

DAVID: I think it's important to know that nobody has been executed in what, 42 years now? And that doesn't just include New York.

DAVID: It's the whole northeastern block of the United States.

DAVID: There have been no executions prior to that, though on New York had an execution chamber that it was pretty busy, I mean.

DAVID: Uhm, yeah older yeah almost 700 people put to death trials were brief. Certainly after World War Two, you know the demographics of who got the death penalty changed depending on who the most recent immigrant group was. But certainly it wasn't a pretty history.

MUZZIO: And hence the former record holder.

DAVID: It's nothing to be proud of and it's believe me, it's not a record.

DAVID: I think most New Yorkers would want to take that from Texas.

MUZZIO: So we were at 91963. What's the next milestone?

DAVID: You know there's a Commission appointed by the the state legislature called the Bartlett Commission, and incidentally, **** Bartlett, a Republican.

DAVID: Former representative from upstate New York testified there and basically they found some of the same problems that we have now that you know there are innocent people going to be executed.

DAVID: Uhm, you can't make the system fair.

DAVID: Generally people who are from the wrong side of the tracks wrong color skin are more likely to get it.

DAVID: The system's totally cost ineffective in the sense, even if you imagined that it operated as a deterrent, and most of the research proves that it doesn't.

MUZZIO: And clearly most of the informed opinion Diaz and other professionals say that there is no deterrent effect.

MUZZIO: I think that there's any justification.

MUZZIO: And the one given is retribution rather than any deterrence.

MUZZIO: And that's that's a trickier one, which I don't necessarily want to get into now.

MUZZIO: But maybe, if we.

MUZZIO: Have time, we'll do it later, but go ahead.

DAVID: Yeah, yeah.

DAVID: And so some of the findings then were kind of the arguments that we're making now, except that there's so much more evidence to bolster those arguments.

DAVID: I think if anything changed.

DAVID: Since 1995, it's that the you know there's there's no more credibility to the idea of deterrence or closure for murder victim family members.

DAVID: But there's a whole lot of evidence of wrongful convictions that there's bias in the application, and we've spent. We've spent something like $200 million to sentence seven people.

DAVID: To death, none of whom will be executed.

DAVID: In effect, what the governor is asking that we do is sort of re up and start this legal experiment all over again with, with no guarantee that the results will be different in the future.

MUZZIO: Times they have changed. I mean 1995 George Pataki, newly you know, inaugurated governor. Having defeated, you know the arch opponent of the death penalty.

MUZZIO: Mario Cuomo, in part on the death penalty issue.

MUZZIO: They signed the death penalty law into effect.

MUZZIO: Now with ten years.

MUZZIO: And the governor wants the death penalty.

MUZZIO: The state Senate has approved it, but it's hold up in the assembly and politically.

MUZZIO: We're doing we're counting here.

MUZZIO: It looks like it.

MUZZIO: Could be a.

MUZZIO: Very close vote and the death penalty could die.

MUZZIO: What is your assessment of sort of the politics of the death penalty in New York State as of the moment?

DAVID: You know, I think there's two things when you're talking about public policy.

DAVID: One is sort of the substance of the issue, right?

DAVID: And they've just held five hearings in which this they went in detail into the substance, and the testimony was just overwhelming.

DAVID: Basically, even even those who are agnostic and the principal issue of the death penalty, we're saying look, you know you can't make.

DAVID: This fair, you can't guarantee that innocent people won't be put to death.

DAVID: It's a serious problem, you know.

DAVID: Maybe we should be investing this money in some crime.

DAVID: Mentioned programs that actually work and there are, you know, Speaking of the governor, but he has a great track record with things like operation Impact that have actually dropped the crime rate in certain communities.

MUZZIO: But the governor camp back off the death penalty as a political issue, as he as he boxed in.

DAVID: You know, I'm.

DAVID: Not a political.

MUZZIO: Yeah, see I missed.

DAVID: Guy so you want Raskin.

MUZZIO: No, I'm I'm sorry I got.

DAVID: Wrong person.

MUZZIO: OK, I apologize.

MUZZIO: What what is going on in the Assembly?

MUZZIO: I mean literally what?

MUZZIO: What first of all you you talked about these unprecedented hearings that the Assembly held what is sort of the constellation of forces here?

MUZZIO: Who's in favor?

MUZZIO: And there's some switches.

MUZZIO: I've heard you talk about.

MUZZIO: Various legislators were at one point in favor of it, now opposed.

MUZZIO: Also, you've made the point that.

MUZZIO: This is a different legislature than it was in 1995. Talk to.

DAVID: Me yeah, I mean it. It's a legislature that has 104 Democrats instead of 93.

DAVID: It's a legislature with a lot of new members, so in general, although there are actually some Republicans that may be opposed this time.

MUZZIO: Democrats less pro death panel I've got.

DAVID: If it does come up for a vote.

DAVID: But also, they're facing a different decision. Back in 1995, there was no life without parole on the books. You know, the only way any legislate.

Right, right, right.

DAVID: Tore could vote to keep the worst of the worst off the streets was to vote for the death penalty.

DAVID: The Court of Appeals decision really has left life without parole on the books, and there's that's definitely has affected the thinking of several.

MUZZIO: Let's talk about that. Court of Appeals decision in June of 2004, the Court of Appeals ruled that the.

MUZZIO: Death penalty statute passed in 95 was unconstitutional and why and what was the?

MUZZIO: Impact of that decision.

DAVID: You know, the sad thing is that a lot of people said it was unconstitutional back in 1995, and because we didn't hold public hearings because there was no consultation with independent constitutional and legal experts. You know this was allowed to fly for 9 years inchauste. At least we didn't kill anybody. But we did waste hundreds of millions of.

MUZZIO: At least we didn't kill anybody.

DAVID: Dollars in New York State, and I think you know, after the some of the DNA exonerations you know it would have been a natural if the death penalty was more than a political issue, it would have been natural for people on both sides to say well look, how can we at least make it better?

DAVID: How can we fix it?

DAVID: So how can we protect the.

DAVID: Innocent, how can we make it fairer?

DAVID: I think from the beginning it was a political symbol and I think it's a political symbol that.

DAVID: Is no longer supported by.

DAVID: You know the arguments and evidence that was cited to to support it.

MUZZIO: Well, one of one.

MUZZIO: Of the differences is clearly that this is a different world socially and in terms of crime and the fear of crime than it was in 1995.

MUZZIO: I mean, we both know that.

MUZZIO: In fact, the numbers had already begun to decline, but they were still extraordinarily high by current standards and.

MUZZIO: The time I I I read a piece that talked.

MUZZIO: The pent up demand for a death penalty.

MUZZIO: There was fear, and this fear was translated by the public through media, politicians, et cetera.

MUZZIO: Into this definitely, and that's different.

MUZZIO: The crime rates much lower people.

MUZZIO: It's not the top of their agenda anymore, so that context is.

MUZZIO: Changed a little bit.

DAVID: I think so, and I think this sort of force behind the death penalty is why doesn't somebody do something?

DAVID: And then here this program kind of the death penalty.

DAVID: The death penalty is the answer.

MUZZIO: Right, OK?

DAVID: It's the silver bullet that's going to solve the crime.

DAVID: The problem we've seen the crime rate dropped dramatically in New York without anybody being executed, and interestingly, if you look at where it's dropped the most whereas it dropped the most in Manhattan where the DA Robert Morgenthau has never sought the death penalty probably never will believe me. If if if all of this was about the death penalty.

DAVID: We know that there are other factors involved, which is probably.

DAVID: Demographics creative policing programs, longer jail sentences but not.

MUZZIO: Talk about the health.

MUZZIO: Talk about the talk.

DAVID: Death penalty.

MUZZIO: About the demographics, just briefly talk about the demographics of.

MUZZIO: The death penalty.

DAVID: Demographics in terms of who gets it?

DAVID: Or yeah, you know.

DAVID: The the figure that.

DAVID: Really jumps out at nationwide.

DAVID: Also to some extent in New York is that you get the death penalty if you kill.

DAVID: A person of perceived higher social status.

DAVID: Basically, if you kill a white person, you're much more likely to get the death penalty than if you kill a person of color or a person who is poor.

DAVID: Marginalized in some sense in society, we've seen various problems in the sense that within New York State, a massive state, millions and millions of people, 62 counties at the time of the Court of Appeals decision 3/4 of our death row, three of the four people on death row came from one county, and it wasn't.

DAVID: You know it wasn't a high crime area, it was.

DAVID: Suffolk County out on the.

MUZZIO: This is not a statistical anomaly.

DAVID: It's not we've seen that replicated throughout the nation.

DAVID: That who gets the death penalty has much less to do with the crime they committed than with where they committed the crime, who they killed, the politics of the particular county, and also the economics of the county that there's such a high financial.

DAVID: Burden on counties when they seek the death penalty these days are reluctant to seek.

MUZZIO: It is it related as well to the operation of the court system.

MUZZIO: The legal system itself I guess the criminal justice system to include the cops in terms of defense attorneys etc.

MUZZIO: Are there patterns there as well?

MUZZIO: Obviously it would relate I guess.

MUZZIO: In a sense to the socioeconomics.

DAVID: I think so, but one of the patterns in terms of you know the decision to seek the death penalty in New York, is that there's no pattern.

DAVID: OK, and there's nothing written into the law.

DAVID: That sort of creates evenness or consistency.

DAVID: You basically have some D async.

DAVID: I don't believe in it.

DAVID: I don't think it helps the community.

DAVID: I think it's a waste of money.

DAVID: I think it's wrong.

DAVID: I'm not going to seek it.

DAVID: That would be several of them.

DAVID: There are others who are for political or philosophical reasons.

DAVID: Going to seek it almost every chance they can get and there's some like my District Attorney in in Schenectady County.

MUZZIO: Right, right?

DAVID: Bob Carney, who is says I'm not morally.

DAVID: Opposed to the death penalty, it's a tremendous waste of resources.

DAVID: It doesn't work as a deterrent.

DAVID: And I think you should get rid of it because it it sort of mucks up the legal system.

MUZZIO: That's a pretty.

MUZZIO: OK so they.

MUZZIO: We have an example of the principles versus the the practicality.

MUZZIO: I mean the death penalty you.

MUZZIO: There's people who are in favor it in principle and in practice, and opposed to it in both.

MUZZIO: But there were people who were.

MUZZIO: In between or in favor it.

MUZZIO: Mainly in principle, but I think your wrongful conviction argument is resonated enough, and I think it certainly shows it in.

MUZZIO: That there's.

MUZZIO: Real hesitance to to imposing this death penalty.

DAVID: And also the realization that we can keep our communities safe without it.

DAVID: OK, you know we have life without parole.

DAVID: We have options.

DAVID: Means we don't have to shed blood.

DAVID: We don't have to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to.

DAVID: Do it and.

DAVID: God forbid we're not going to execute.

DAVID: You know the innocent person if we're not executing anybody.

MUZZIO: OK, looking forward.

MUZZIO: Next year.

MUZZIO: Two years.

MUZZIO: Does New York State have a death penalty law in any form?

DAVID: Well, I hope not.

DAVID: I pray not and our group New Yorkers against the death penalty will certainly be doing the kind of public education that we think is needed.

DAVID: My sense is that the more people think about the death penalty, but certainly the more they learn about how it's applied, the less likely they are to support it on some level.

DAVID: You know, just some practical considerations.

DAVID: It doesn't work.

DAVID: It doesn't do what we expect it to do or.

Hope it will.

DAVID: Will do and I guess I have some confidence.

DAVID: I certainly very much appreciate this hearings process.

DAVID: It's been.

DAVID: Unprecedented, it's been remarkable.

MUZZIO: It has been remarkable.

DAVID: They had held five hearings and it was three committees and the chairs of those committees were there almost every minute of those hearings.

MUZZIO: And members were.

MUZZIO: There and they were well attended by the public.

DAVID: Members are there.

MUZZIO: It was really almost a model.

DAVID: Right, yeah, absolutely and I.

MUZZIO: Think I hate to say this about a state that's known as the state of dysfunction.

DAVID: Yeah, well, maybe it's you know, maybe it's a new day and if the death penalty was the issue where you know, shining light on it changed the politics of it, changed the public perception of it. Gee, you know, it's a good way to start, I think.

MUZZIO: Thank you.