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April 23, 2012 08:16 PM UTC

Liberals Cheer Hickenlooper's Direct-File Signature

  • 6 Comments
  • by: Colorado Pols

As the Pueblo Chieftain’s Patrick Malone reports:

Judges will decide whether it is appropriate to criminally charge 16- and 17-year-olds in Colorado as adults under a Pueblo lawmaker’s bill signed into law Friday by Gov. John Hickenlooper.

Prosecutors will no longer have the authority to directly file adult charges against juveniles. Instead, they must justify the charge to a judge under HB1271, sponsored by Sen. Angela Giron, D-Pueblo, and others.

Prosecutors still can charge 16- and 17-year-olds as adults for the most serious offenses, first-degree murder and second-degree murder for instance, but the defendants are entitled to ask for a judge to review that decision.

Hickenlooper said he grappled with the decision to sign the bill into law.

“This is about as close as I’ve come to a veto without vetoing,” he said.

The pressure that Gov. John Hickenlooper was under to veto House Bill 12-1271 was indeed considerable, and from friendly quarters like the current Denver District Attorney and prominent Democrat Mitch Morrissey, and his predecessor former Gov. Bill Ritter.

It will be dismissed in some circles as a mere bone thrown to the liberals before Hickenlooper does a bunch of things that greatly upset them, but we actually think he could have done that elsewhere and more easily. That being the case, even some critics on the left will look past the political play-by-play and see a legitimate act of conscience on Hickenlooper’s part.

Comments

6 thoughts on “Liberals Cheer Hickenlooper’s Direct-File Signature

  1. Every kid who commits a crime deserves justice in a fair and balanced way.  I just don’t see how a DA should serve as judge and jury for anyone, let alone the youngest members of our society.  

    I better watch it…I’m sounding like onebigdemocrat

    1. There are still plenty in the pachyderm party who would rather shoot first and often.

      There might be hope yet for this old country if a big red like you shows a bit of conscience.  Who knows where this going to lead.  Maybe a prominent Republican will call for troop reductions abroad.

  2. neither of Hick’s opponents in the last election would have done it and it is the right thing, a return to a sensible balance.

    This is why, while we Dems may carp and moan over some of our more DINO type candidates, all things considered, we are always better off with them than with Rs, and certainly never worse off.

    Even in cases, such as with Manchin of W. Virginia, we have a tiny (as in teensy weensy) plus in the form of a contributor to the Dem majority even though he generally votes against it on everything Dems care most about, whereas an R who votes pretty much just like Manchin on all those issues wouldn’t even supply a ghost of a plus, not even the supposedly moderate ones who always fall in GOP party line when the chips are really down and that has always included the likes of Snowe and Collins. Any Snowe votes from the moment she decided not to run again not withstanding.

    Whatever Hick’s motives, and I tend to think it’s a mistake to dismiss the possibility of any honorable ones, let this be a lesson to all Dems, liberals and progressives that it is always better to vote to elect a D than to vote for any particular R, any third party protest candidate to make a statement or to stay home because it doesn’t make any difference. It always makes a difference. With the state of the GOP today, it’s always stupid to sit by and allow any R to be elected, anywhere, ever, in any position, to contribute to any potential GOP majority, period.  

    This is not to say we shouldn’t try for better candidates to run as long as they would seriously have a chance to win and conditions and demographics are changing all the time. Too progressive to win in one election cycle may be OK in the next or the one after that. In the meantime, I’d vote for a D piece of toast over any R. These are desperate times with no room for nice sentiments about voting for the individual, not the party.  

  3. on Friday influenced the Governor’s decision are completely unfounded. All kidding aside, he got it right. That signature will make life better for real people real soon. Well done, Hick.

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