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Litigation

Boston College Law School

2005

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Catholic Judges In Capital Cases, John H. Garvey, Amy Coney Barrett Jan 2005

Catholic Judges In Capital Cases, John H. Garvey, Amy Coney Barrett

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

The Catholic Church’s opposition to the death penalty places Catholic judges in a moral and legal bind. While these judges are obliged by oath, professional commitment, and the demands of citizenship to enforce the death penalty, they are also obliged to adhere to their church’s teaching on moral matters. Although the legal system has a solution for this dilemma by allowing the recusal of judges whose convictions keep them from doing their job, Catholic judges will want to sit whenever possible without acting immorally. However, litigants and the general public are entitled to impartial justice, which may be ...