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Important news for progressives everywhere seems to have just been a blip on the radar here tonight and it's a little disconcerting.

New Jersey became the first state in the US since 1965 to repeal the death penalty and few people seemed to care.

This is seriously big news and really, do we need to see another John Edwards diary in the recommended list? Please...

I'm not here to argue pro or con, tonight, those arguments don't usually go very far here and I'm not interested in that kind of thing.

But everyone here should be encouraged about this.

The story in New Jersey is a perfect example of people powered politics that should be studied by all of us.

The anti-death penalty groups have effected policy, in a stark and quite astounding manner. They did it with a lot of work and a lot of time spent lobbying and making their case. And it shows just how important it is to get Democrats elected from the bottom up. This would have never happened without a Democratic majority in the legislature in NJ. The Republicans seem especially attached to having the death penalty and they have succeeded in making it a partisan issue.

They've hammered people with polls and surveys making their case (despite its obvious flaws) and the leadership in Jersey decided to do what everyone claims the leaders in Washington aren't doing; lead.

Doesn't that matter to anyone here?

Are people more content with posting the same repetitive plaudits about their particular horse in the Presidential race? Or would they rather hear some good news about progressives Democrats even getting something done, against history and even difficult odds?

Why aren't people here applauding Jon Corzine's taking a stand, a stand that could very well make his job a little bit more difficult in the future?

I'm an extremely partisan guy. More than just about anyone I know. And I think it's important to make sure people hear about the positive effects that parties can have, if they stick to their guns and decide to lead.

The death penalty is on its way out in this country. And the work the people in Jersey should be applauded for their efforts. All Democrats and progressives should take note and learn.

Edited to change title and to add a link to the previous diary.

from davidseth

phat

Originally posted to phatass on Thu Dec 13, 2007 at 08:40 PM PST.

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