AP: Death penalty ballot measure survives legal challenge

Posted By: Channel 8 Eyewitness News


LINCOLN, Neb. (AP)  A ballot measure that could reinstate Nebraska’s death penalty has survived a legal challenge before the state Supreme Court.

The court on Friday rejected arguments that the ballot petition drive was invalid because Gov. Pete Ricketts wasn’t listed as a sponsor, even though he helped bankroll the effort.

The lawsuit alleged that Ricketts should have been named because of his donations to the Nebraskans for the Death Penalty campaign and his close ties to its managers.

Ricketts denied the allegations, saying his support for the campaign didn’t make him a sponsor. The sponsor requirement is designed to ensure the public knows who is behind a petition drive.

Lawmakers abolished the death penalty in May 2015, overriding Ricketts’ veto and prompting supporters to begin the petition drive.