July 24th, 2008
02:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Executed inmate makes presidential endorsement

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/24/art.execution.ap.jpg caption="Death penalty opponents gather outside of Bishop's execution site Wednesday."]

(CNN) - Support for Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama extend to death row Wednesday.

According to The Jackson Clarion Ledger, a Mississippi newspaper, death row inmate Dale Leo Bishop's final words before being executed Wednesday night included an appeal to Americans to vote for the Illinois senator.

"For those who oppose the death penalty and want to see it end, our best bet is to vote for Barack Obama because his supporters have been working behind the scenes to end this practice," Bishop said, according to the paper.

Bishop was convicted in 2000 of participating in the murder of a man who was beaten to death with a claw hammer two years earlier. Bishop himself did not deliver the fatal blow and, not including contract killings, is only the eighth person executed who did not directly kill his victim since the death penalty was reinstated 32 years ago, according to the paper.

Obama himself is not explicitly against the death penalty, saying it should be reserved for "only the most heinous crimes." He also said he disagreed with a Supreme Court decision last month that struck down the death penalty for child rape.

"I have said repeatedly that I think that the death penalty should be applied in very narrow circumstances for the most egregious of crimes," Obama said then. "I think that the rape of a small child, 6 or 8 years old, is a heinous crime and if a state makes a decision that under narrow, limited, well-defined circumstances the death penalty is at least potentially applicable that that does not violate our Constitution."

He's also said he would support the death penalty for Osama bin Laden.

Watch: Obama tells Fareed Zakaria he favors the death penalty for bin Laden

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (215 Responses)
  1. Teddy California

    Please igore these kinds of news. If we do that, then CNN will not report them.

    July 24, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  2. Scott L

    Murderers for Obama!!!!

    July 24, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  3. Sandi

    This man's recomendation – a murder who kills with a claw hammer, is reason enough NOT to elect Obama.

    July 24, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  4. Jim

    Obama and the Democratic party – friends to criminals everywhere.

    July 24, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  5. former GOP

    fella from Chicago
    Wow so the fact that you glorify the death of a person says a lot about you and your mindset and the Man you want the be president. It does not surprise me because McCain does not mind killing our kids in a pointless war, and im sure just like he was ported why being a POW because who his farther was so are his son being protected. I don’t care for McCain but I would never use a persons death to glorify my choose for President

    July 24, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  6. fran from Canada

    Fella from Chicago, SICK I am sure glad I am not an american

    July 24, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  7. Geri

    I'm really sick and tired of every little mention of Obama's name gets so much coverage. I'm sorry to say but Fox news has been the fairest of all the networks and I'm a democrat. CNN & MSNBC have been in bed with Obama since the very beginning. Lets get news out there. Obama is forgetting issues and trying to pretend he's already the President. Its an insult to JFK when they try and compare the 2. Sorry CNN if I spoke against your baby.

    July 24, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  8. Mike, TX

    One more reason to vote McCain.

    July 24, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  9. maria

    If Obama can make changes it would be that!! EXECUTE THOSE WHO HURT OUR CHILDREN OF OUR FUTURE!

    July 24, 2008 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  10. Robert NYC & Miami

    Convicts for Obo!

    July 24, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  11. Annoy the Media, say NO to Obama

    I guess Obama is not as powerful as we think he is. He probably promised this Bishop guy that he would save his life.

    July 24, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  12. MarkRSM

    Dear Sir,

    A convicted killer is saying we should vote for Obama, only issue is felonies do not get to vote.

    It is very strange that all these fring groups are so supportive of Obama, he scares me.

    God Bless You

    July 24, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  13. Connie

    So, murderers and rapists support Obama.

    As a rape victim myself, I am voting for McCain.

    July 24, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  14. Today's ignorance award finalists

    Matthew July 24th, 2008 12:42 pm ET
    Well that should say something about the kind of company Obama keeps. Racist preachers, drug dealers, and now murderers.

    rexx July 24th, 2008 12:42 pm ET
    A Murder is for Obama. What a shock. lol

    fella from Chicago July 24th, 2008 12:44 pm ET
    A dead Obama supporter is a good Obama supporter.

    Mike, Syracuse, NY July 24th, 2008 12:47 pm ET
    Glad to see that Obama has that critical death row inmate vote locked up. Should we poll child molesters next, because I bet they like him too.

    Phil-Little Rock July 24th, 2008 1:03 pm ET
    Too bad that guy couldn't campaign for Obama from prison.

    July 24, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  15. Frank Canada

    For all those people in favour of State murder (THAT IS WHAT THE DEATH PENALTY IS) I would direct your attention to some other events like what recently happened in Canada where we luckily moved into the 20th century and did away with the death penalty.

    Just recently a pathologist was found to be incompetent and his findings over the years resulted in at least 29 wrongful convictions for murder with likely at lot more to eventually be uncovered. Many of these were murders of young children with a family member convicted of the crime on the evidence of this incompetent pathologist.

    Fortunately with no death penalty all the wrongfully convicted are being exonerated and compensated for the injustice but all the death penalty would have accomplished in these and many other cases is to eliminate the state's obligation to compensate.

    There are hundreds of other innocent people over the years who have been wrongfully convicted and incarcerated but because of advances in DNA technology have subsequently been exonerated. There won't be any difference in the U.S. with the possible exception there would be more wrongful convictions due to the ratio of people.

    The bottom line is our justice systems both in Canada and the U.S. serve the public fairly well but they are not infallable. It is pretty hard to bring someone back to life after you find they were actually innocent and right now the wrongfully executed in the U.S. are likely covered up to keep this barbaric practice from the dark ages alive.

    July 24, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  16. New Voter for McCain

    Yes, I will take advice from a jail bird.
    MCCain 08

    July 24, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  17. Democrat NOT for Obama

    That ought to show something to the people of the USA.

    Just for that endorsement ... one should not vote for Obo.

    July 24, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  18. Annoy the Media, say NO to Obama

    Guess what folks...

    Thats another group were Obama leads McCain..

    Lets poll america's inmates...

    Obama wins 99% to 1%

    July 24, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  19. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    The death penalty..........and eye for an eye only makes the world more blind.

    July 24, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  20. Nation of Whiners

    Doris, You told Robert the truth! Thank you.

    July 24, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  21. Biffington, Biff

    as a republican, you sound like you should fit right in with the group you listed.

    July 24, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  22. Howard

    Did the person he beat to death with a claw hammer voice his support for Obama, or did he say, as they were bashing his head in, "I support John McCain!".

    July 24, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  23. H-ROD


    July 24, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  24. JB

    Instead of this man trying to abolish the death penalty by requesting that people vote for Obama. He should have apologized to the victim's family and appealed to people not to do want he did. If you don't murder someone , you won't get the death penalty.

    July 24, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  25. Mark Cross Junction VA

    What a glowing endorsement for the Obama Campaign. America wise up and see how safe your life will be with this man!

    July 24, 2008 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
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