With several military personnel on death row and in the federal appeals/habeas process, and several death referred cases pending, here is an interesting article on some federal judges pushing back on limits on appeals.
Posted Aug 14 2009 –
A study by The New York Times reveals an uptick in the number of dissents in death penalty cases. The Times reports that, "In dozens of capital cases in recent years, appeals court judges, some of whom have ruled in favor of the death penalty many times, have complained that Congress and the Supreme Court have raised daunting barriers for death row prisoners to appeal their convictions, and in many cases the judges have taken on their colleagues."
The newspaper cites several cases, including a recent dissent in a U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit case, Cooper v. Brown. California death row inmate Kevin Cooper had sought a stay of his execution, but the Ninth Circuit panel upheld the district court’s ruling in favor of execution.