On Sunday, former Texas Governor Mark White—once a strong supporter of the death penalty—said he thought the state should reconsider capital punishment because the risk of executing an innocent is too great. “There is a very strong case to be made for a review of our death penalty statutes and even look at the possibility of having life without parole so we don’t look up one day and determine that we as the State of Texas have executed someone who is in fact innocent,” said White, who governed as a Democrat from 1983 to 1987. White’s remarks came as Texas Governor Rick Perry finds himself under fire for executing Cameron T. Willingham in 2004, even after an arson expert who testified in Willingham’s case concluded after the conviction that his evidence was seriously flawed. Three weeks ago, Perry replaced the chairman and two other members of a board that was supposed to review Willingham’s case. The new chairman, a close ally of Perry, canceled the hearings.
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