Huffpost Chicago

Illinois House Votes To Abolish Death Penalty

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — The Illinois House has approved a plan to abolish capital punishment in a whirlwind reversal on a historic vote.

The legislation to halt state-sponsored execution gained the necessary 60 votes Thursday after an earlier vote fell short.

The landmark action comes nearly 11 years after then-Gov. George Ryan cleared death row and declared a moratorium on capital punishment in Illinois.

The legislation now moves to the Senate, where President John Cullerton says he supports the proposal and hopes it passes. But the Chicago Democrat says he won't push his members to back it, calling the vote a personal decision.

Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn. Quinn has said he supports the death penalty but won't reinstate it until he's sure it works. His office isn't saying whether he supports the repeal legislation.