Beauprez hits Hickenlooper on Dunlap decision after clemency comment

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Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat, faces Republican Bob Beauprez this fall.

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat, faces Republican Bob Beauprez this fall.

DENVER — Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, who granted convicted murdered Nathan Dunlap a temporary reprieve last May, is under fire on the issue of the death penalty once again.

Hickenlooper, a Democrat facing reelection this fall, hinted in an interview with CNN that he wouldn’t rule out granting full clemency to the killer if he loses this fall to a Republican who vows to carry out Dunlap’s execution.

When he announced his temporary reprieve last May just a few months before Dunlap’s scheduled execution, Hickenlooper told reporters he was unlikely to revisit the case before leaving office.

But in audio of the CNN interview, which has yet to air but as obtained by Complete Colorado, a new website funded by the conservative Independence Institute, Hickenlooper responded to the interviewer’s question about what might happen if Republicans are clammoring to have Dunlap executed and campaigning on making such a promise.

“If that becomes a political issue, in that context within a campaign, obviously there’s a period of time between the election and, and the end of the year where individuals can make decisions, such as a governor can,” Hickenlooper says.

When asked to elaborate on that point, Hickenlooper makes plain that he could grant Dunlap full clemency at any point.

“The issue that a political campaign would make a human life into, you know, a political football, is unacceptable.  Right?” Hickenlooper says. “And it’s not… and a) I, I think it would backfire tremendously on any candidate that did that.

“And if they did do that, and if somehow they won, there are obviously remedies that the governor can do, you know, I could give it a full clemency between election day, I could…there are a number of different opportunities to make sure that doesn’t happen.  Again, keeping in mind it should not be a political football.”

In an interview with FOX31 Denver earlier this month, Hickenlooper, who ran in 2010 as a pro-death penalty candidate, made it clear that he now opposes capital punishment.

Bob Beauprez, who won the GOP gubernatorial nomination in June and has promised that “justice will be served” to Dunlap if he’s elected in November, slammed Hickenlooper Monday afternoon.

“John Hickenlooper’s ‘temporary reprieve’ for Nathan Dunlap is one of clearest examples of his indecision and weak leadership,” Beauprez said. “It’s outrageous that now John Hickenlooper is threatening to give a convicted mass-murderer full clemency if people vote against him.

“There are plenty of good moral arguments for and against the death-penalty, but the law in Colorado is very, very clear. Nathan Dunlap has gone through twenty years exhausting every option available to him under Colorado law. His execution date was set. John Hickenlooper took an oath to enforce the laws of the state of Colorado, but when it was up to him to simply make the decision, he said ‘I can’t decide, so I’ll just leave it to the next guy.’

“That day justice was stolen from the families of the victims of that convicted murderer. On my watch, justice will be carried out, the laws of the state of Colorado will be enforced, and and I will never turn my back on the victims.”

Beauprez’s campaign also released a 60-second web video on the subject.

13 comments

  • Anonymous

    All this from the same guy staring at a piece of green glass in a campaign ad like it is some sort of mineral in hopes to convince us he is a “geologist” – he is weak, vain, and a chicken and these are not good qualities in any leader I don’t care who’s camp you are hailing from.

    • M88

      Hickenlooper is OPENLY BLACKMAILING the people of Colorado by saying either elect him again or he will release our convicted killers…. Are you freakin kidding me? This is an outrage this man is an embarrassment to our entire state and a complete coward to boot. Last time I checked blackmail was ILLEGAL!!!! O wait, Hickenlooper doesn’t recognize our laws……..

  • Asok Smith

    One night less than two weeks before Christmas in 1993, Nathan Dunlap shot to death, execution style, three female and one male Chuck E. Cheese workers after their Denver area restaurant had closed for business that night. Two of those he slaughtered were 17 year old children (a boy and a girl) and the third was a 19 year female.

    http://murderpedia.org/male.D/d/dunlap-nathan.htm

    Hickenlooper has now stated that he’ll grant clemency to this mass murderer should he lose the election.

  • Judy Soda

    Hickenlooper will not carry out the laws of the state – there’s a shock. Dunlap brutally killed 4 people and was sentenced to die. What part of that does he not understand? Clemency is defying the law of the state in this case. Sounds like Washington.

  • Sharkdiver

    Hickenlooper is a spineless puppet of the progressive movement. Remember that he ran for his first term as a PRO DEATH PENALTY candidate, and then failed that task when the time came to prove it. This should tell you all you need to know about this deceitful and dishonest politician. Beauprez is not perfect, but he’s head and shoulders above the coward and liar currently in office. And don’t even get me started on Hickenlooper’s attacks on our 2nd Amendment rights. Suffice it to say that the sooner we boot this guy from office, the better. And as for Dunlap, that useless sack of blood and bones has already overstayed his welcome.

  • Anonymous

    Hickenlooper is and has ALWAYS been a coward. I truly have NO idea how that man got elected. Maybe he should ask the family’s, who’s kids were brutally murdered that day, what they think. I have lived here in Colorado for 30 years and remember that day well…..and have always known that Dunlap would never die for his crimes. I wish my tax dollars would have not helped keep him alive this long!!! I wonder if he even remembers that day or was he too busy digging up rocks.

  • Mike

    The Hick had got a firm Grasp on Obama’s tiny sausage. The idea to free murders and other criminals comes straight down from the White House.

  • S2

    My wife and I drove past Chuckie Cheese about 2 hours prior to the killings, I’ll never forget. About time for some tar and feathering I’d say.

  • M88

    Hickenlooper is OPENLY BLACKMAILING the people of Colorado by saying either elect him again or he will release our convicted killers…. Are you freakin kidding me? This is an outrage this man is an embarrassment to our entire state and a complete coward to boot. Last time I checked blackmail was ILLEGAL!!!! O wait, Hickenlooper doesn’t recognize our laws……..

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