Guido Fawkes campaigns to restore death penalty
The blogger has launched an e-petition calling for MPs to vote on the issue
Political blogger Guido Fawkes has been on a roll recently, lobbying MPs to act over the News International phone hacking scandal and pursuing Lib Dem cabinet minister Chris Huhne over the penalty points allegation. But he faces a tough task in his latest crusade - convincing MPs to reinstate the death penalty.
Over the weekend, Fawkes (real name Paul Staines, above) came out in support of a campaign to bring back capital punishment and has launched an e-petition demanding MPs vote on the matter.
On his blog he pledged: "Guido will put all the resources at his command into a campaign for a vote on the restoration of capital punishment for child and cop killers. Even if we don't win the vote on the floor of the House, we shall at least see which MPs believe salus populi suprema est lex, and those that put the welfare of child killers above the wider community."
Although there is a certain irony in Guido's position considering the fate of his revolutionary namesake, who was executed following the Gunpowder Plot in 1605, it is likely to prove popular with the public.
As Guido pointed out on Twitter, a YouGov poll in 2010 found that 74 per cent of people supported the death penalty for murder in some circumstances. He also found support from three Conservative MPs - Philip Davies, Priti Patel and Andrew Turner.
However, the blogger was met with some fierce resistance from among his 50,000 followers. And when MPs last voted on the issue in 1994 the idea was rejected by 403 votes to 159. Then there is the fact that the death penalty is illegal in the European Union.
None of this has deterred Guido, who has been peppering his Twitter feed with campaigning messages. "This is people v the political elite," he announced on Monday. Earlier he claimed: "Since the abolition of the death penalty in the '60s the murder rate has doubled."
He has also announced that he is looking for an intern to help with the campaign to get 100,000 signatures, and he even told one of his critics: "I would personally execute child killers. Think you'll find a lot of fathers would feel the same." ·
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