Last updated on: 8/29/2012 | Author:

Eileen M. Connor, JD Biography

Proskauer Special Litigation Attorney at the New York Legal Assistance Group
Not Clearly Pro or Con to the question "Should the Death Penalty Be Legal?"

“States are currently reexamining the use of capital punishment in the face of rising costs, increasing budget deficits, and concerns about the fair administration of the death penalty. In contrast, the federal government, which does not possess a general police power and is not the primary enforcer of criminal law, is insensitive to cost and unlikely to engage in meaningful debate regarding the rationale for capital punishment. Furthermore, the current use of the federal death penalty as a backstop to state sentencing regimes is out of step with constitutional principles governing capital sentencing. In addition to creating the potential for unfairness to individual defendants, the presence of the federal death penalty undermines state actors from legislators to district attorneys and jurors. The author concludes that a due regard for the primary role of the states in criminal justice administration suggests that federal restraint, in the form of a statutory adoption of a rule akin to the Department of Justice‚Äôs current ‘Petite Policy,’ is in order.”

“The Undermining Influence of the Federal Death Penalty on Capital Policymaking and Criminal Justice Administration in the States,” The Journal of Law & Criminology,, June 7, 2010

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Proskauer Special Litigation Attorney, Special Litigation Unit of New York Legal Assistance Group, Jan. 2012-present
  • Member, New York State Bar Association, 2007-present
  • Inactive Member, State Bar of California, May 30, 2007-present
  • John J. Gibbons Fellow in Public Interest Law, Gibbons P.C., 2009-2011
  • Staff Attorney, Habeas Corpus Resource Center, San Francisco, California
  • Law Clerk, Martha Craig Daughtrey, United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • Articles Editor, New York University Law Review, 2004-2005
  • Editorial Staff, New York University Law Review, 2003-2004
  • JD, cum laude, New York University School of Law
  • BA, cum laude, Brown University
  • None found