A federal appeals court panel Tuesday reversed a lower court ruling that found the federal death penalty unconstitutional because it amounted to the "state-sponsored murder" of innocent people. A three-judge panel of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said in its unanimous ruling that precedent set by the U.S. Supreme Court prohibits it from upholding the ruling. The lower court ruling was issued earlier this year by Judge Jed S. Rakoff in a case involving two men charged in a drug-murder conspiracy. Rakoff said in July that the federal death penalty law "denies due process and, indeed, is tantamount to foreseeable, state-sponsored murder of innocent human beings." More here. Without going in to the pro/con death penalty thread, I will say that until there's one proof (DNA or otherwise) that someone innocent DID die, the lower court has no case, imho. Having said that, I believe that somewhere down the historical line, we did kill off a few innocents.