Senator Ellis Press Release

For Immediate Release
July 7, 2011
Contact: Jeremy Warren, 512-463-0113

Ellis Statement on Supreme Court Decision on Leal Execution

Senator Rodney Ellis (D-Houston) released the following statement regarding the US Supreme Court's decision to allow the state of Texas to proceed with the execution of Humberto Leal Garcia:

"I am disappointed that the Supreme Court did not issue a stay of execution for Humberto Leal Garcia Jr. today, which would have given Congress additional time to pass legislation to bring the United States into compliance with the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, and given Mr. Leal the legal protections he is entitled to under the treaty.

"The message that this decision sends to the world is that it is more important in the United States to execute someone quickly rather than correctly, and international law is irrelevant.

"Unfortunately, this decision makes it more likely that Americans' rights will be violated by other countries. If the United States and states like Texas do not recognize and respect the rights of foreign nationals in the United States, then we cannot expect other countries to respect Americans' rights while they are living, working, or visiting abroad.

"It is now imperative that Governor Perry issue Mr. Leal a 30-day reprieve and for Congress to pass the "Consular Notification Compliance Act." We must ensure that the United States lives up to its international treaty obligations, and Mr. Leal and other Mexican nationals on death row receive the judicial review that they are legally entitled to."

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