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  N.J. Senate Votes To Abolish Death PenaltyDecember 10, 2007 15:55 The State Senate voted today to abolish the death penalty, moving New Jersey a big step closer to becoming the first state to end capital punishment since the U.S. Supreme Court reinstated the ultimate punishment in 1976.
"New Jersey can become a leader and an inspiration to other states," said State Sen. Robert Martin, a Republican from North Jersey who joined Democrats in seeking to abolish the death penalty.

Legislators in the Democratic-controlled Senate voted 21-16 to end capital punishment. Four Republicans joined with Democrats to provide the majority; two Democrats joined Republican in opposition.

Two urban Democrats - Sens. Sharpe James and Ronald Rice - abstained.

The measure, which would replace the death penalty with a sentence of life without parole, will be up for a vote in the Democratic-controlled General Assembly on Thursday. If it passes there, as appears likely, Gov. Corzine, a Democrat, has pledged to sign the repeal into law.

Before the vote, advocates of abolition raised a series of practical and moral arguments against the death penalty. They asserted that the punishment existed on paper only, noting that New Jersey reinstated the death penalty in 1982 but hasn't executed anyone since 1963.
  Abc News: He Said, They Said: Craig Denies Claims Of More Sexual AdvancesDecember 03, 2007 22:54 Craig's list of accusers is getting longer.

Two men, including a former male escort, have confirmed to ABC News the allegations that they've had sexual encounters with Idaho's embattled Sen. Larry Craig.

Mike Jones, 50, told ABC News that Craig paid him $200 for sex during the winter of 2004-2005.

A second man, a 50-year old former Army captain, also told ABC News that Craig made sexual advances toward him in the men's room of a Republican gathering in Washington state in 1981.

The men were two of eight new people who claimed encounters with Craig in an article published Sunday by the Idaho Statesman newspaper.