Bishops win one

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Yesterday, New Mexico governor Bill Richardson signed legislation doing away with the death penalty in that state. The Catholic Church had lobbied strongly for him to do so, as in this March 16 letter from the USCCB citing longstanding papal opposition to the practice. Richardson’s a Catholic, and he called the decision “extremely difficult,” so maybe the bishops’ efforts pushed him over the edge. Will Bill Donohue will be applauding this manifestation of fidelity to church teaching? Don’t hold your breathe. Not a peep issued from the Catholic League in 2007 when New Jersey became the first state to abolish the de since the Supreme Court permitted reinstatement of the death penalty 33 years ago. Bill doesn’t go to that part of the cafeteria.