President Biden’s Criminal Justice: Death to Death Penalty!

  • Licia Cianci


Abstract: La giustizia penale sotto la Presidenza Biden: a morte la pena di morte! - Capital punishment is one of the most contentious and debated problems in the United States, both at institutional level and among civil society. In contrast with previous Presidents’ retentionist attitudes, Joe Biden has been the first candidate to openly campaign for the abolition of death penalty. In July 2021, the U.S. Attorney General issued a memorandum imposing a moratorium on federal executions. This article provides a general picture of the legal regime of the federal capital punishment, with a review of the major decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court that contributed to shaping the actual constitutional status of the penalty. Only a Congressional act could officially outlaw the federal death penalty with a certain degree of stability. Nonetheless, by reviewing gubernatorial moratorium strategies among some States, the present article suggests that Biden’s promises could potentially lead to a complete abolition of capital punishment at the federal level, with possible positive implications in retentionist States as well.

Keywords: Joe Biden; Criminal Justice; Federal Death Penalty; Moratorium; United States of America.

Feb 4, 2023
How to Cite
CIANCI, Licia. President Biden’s Criminal Justice: Death to Death Penalty!. DPCE Online, [S.l.], v. 56, n. Sp 1, feb. 2023. ISSN 2037-6677. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 24 feb. 2024. doi:
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