The 2008 Texas Democratic Party platform continues to call for a moratorium on executions. This is the third time the platform has called for a moratorium. The first platform that called for a halt to executions and the creation of a commission to study the problems in the Texas death penalty was in 2004.
At the State Convention, there was a caucus meeting of "Democrats Against the Death Penalty", which was founded by Texas Moratorium Network's Scott Cobb in 2004. Speakers at the caucus this year were Rev. Carroll Pickett, Judge Charlie Baird, Lee Greenwood and Sissy Farenthold. More than 300 people attended the caucus, packing the room and standing along the walls.
Picket is a former chaplain of the death house in Huntsville. He accompanied 95 people to their executions in his capacity as chaplain.
Judge Baird is a former member of the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals and current Judge of the 299th District Court in Austin.
Leeatriss Greenwood is the mother of Joseph Nichols who was executed last year in Huntsville. Greenwood received a standing ovation at the caucus meeting after telling the moving story of her son's execution. She and many others believer her son was wrongfully convicted. "You stand in front of a glass and I watched them kill him. That's not easy. That is one of the hardest things that you will ever do," said Greenwood.
Sissy Farenthold is a former Texas state representative who ran for the Democratic nomination for governor in 1972, getting into a runoff with the eventual winner.