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Majority of Canadians want to bring back death penalty: poll

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A majority of Canadians would like to see the death penalty brought back for murder.

According to a Research Co. poll, 54 per cent of Canadian support capital punishment for murder convictions.

In British Columbia, 58 per cent of residents support bringing the death penalty back, while support is highest in Alberta with 60 per cent wanting to see it reintroduced. Support in Quebec is the lowest in the country with 43 per cent wanting it returned.

"Almost three-in-five Canadians aged 55 and over (59 per cent) would welcome the return of the death penalty," Research Co. president Mario Canseco, says in a media release issued, March 17. "The numbers are slightly lower among those aged 35-to-54 (54 per cent) and those aged 18-to-34 (50 per cent)."

When it comes to party lines, 71 per cent of Conservative Party voters say they'd like to reinstate capital punishment for murder. That number falls for NDP voters, 49 per cent, and Liberal voters, 48 per cent.

Fifty-three per cent of those asked would prefer to sentence convicted murderers to life imprisonment without parole, while 37 per cent favour the death penalty.

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While the majority of Canadians support bringing back the death penalty only nine per cent deem it "always" appropriate.

One-quarter of people say it's "never" appropriate, while 58 per cent think it's "sometimes" appropriate.

Two-thirds of people that are opposed to reinstating the death penalty for murder are worried primarily about the possibility of a person being wrongly convicted and executed.

The majority of those in favour of the death penalty, 57 per cent, believe it serves as a deterrent for potential murderers, while 55 per cent says it fits the crime, and 51 per cent think it will save taxpayers money.

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For those in favour of being back the death penalty, only 46 per cent think it would bring the family some closure.


To contact a reporter for this story, email Ben Bulmer or call (250) 309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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