Wednesday, March 22, 2006

safety of children v. rights of pedophiles?

S. 1138 or "Jessica's Law" is on special order, that means the bill is at the top of the Senate schedule. I have offered an amendment that says this: anyone convicted for the 2nd time for 1st degree sexual assault on a child is eligible for capital punishment. For the first time in this term, I went to the floor for nearly 2 hours (Sen. Larry Martin added a friendly amendment to clarify my intent). Unfortunately, the debate centered around the constitutionality of the sentence. I am concerned that the SC Senate is more interested in the Constitutional rights of a convicted pedophile than the safety of our children.

I have a serious problem with the argument that we should not vote for laws if there is some chance that the Supreme Court will throw out the law. We are sent to Columbia by our constituents to pass good laws, period. We have our role in government and the courts their role (even though they are often wrong).

My vow is this: I will vote on what is good and right for South Carolina. If higher courts want to reject good law, then we must look at replacing irresponsible judges.