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By Fili Sagapolutele

PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (August 14, 2000 – PIDP/CPIS)---The Territorial Senate has rejected Governor Tauese Sunia’s proposal to abolish the death penalty for persons convicted of first degree murder.

Tauese has called the death penalty "an archaic and cruel method of punishment, which is contrary to modern ideals of justice." The Governor believes parole after 40 years is sufficient enough punishment.

It is not clear why the Senate rejected the proposal to eliminate the death penalty.

Earlier, the House passed the Governor’s request, but amended it to eliminate the possibility of parole for those serving life sentences in prison for first degree murder.

Rep. Muavaefa‘atasi Ae Ae, Jr., tried twice and failed both times to convince the House majority to pass a method to carry out the death penalty.

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