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Branstad says death penalty push unlikely in 2013

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad says he supports institution of the death penalty but won't push for such legislation because he doubts he would clear the Senate.

Branstad noted Monday he's long supported approval of a death penalty in cases of kidnap or rape where the victim is killed. In his earlier stint as governor, he tried unsuccessfully to approve capital punishment in Iowa.

Some lawmakers have called for changing Iowa law to allow the death penalty following the discovery of two bodies believed to be Elizabeth Collins and Lyric Cook, who went missing last summer.

Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal, a Council Bluffs Democrat, opposes reinstatement of the death penalty.

Branstad says he's focused on legislation that has a "realistic chance of being approved."

Iowa outlawed capital punishment in 1965.

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