Rendell defends veto of deadly force

    Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell is defending his vetoes of three measures, including a bill expanding the right to self-defense with deadly force.Rendell said he supports language in the measure closing loopholes in Megan’s Law statutes. In the end, though, he said he was worried the legislation would make streets more dangerous.Political observers expect the “Castle Doctrine” measure to become law next year, when Republicans control the House, Senate and governor’s office, but Rendell said he isn’t sure what will happen.”I just don’t know. We’ll see. And look — I can only do what I believe is right. I can’t take care of the future. I’m not going to be a factor in it,” Rendell said Monday. “I did what I believe was right.”Rendell conceded his gun-control efforts were an “abject failure,” pointing out lawmakers never voted for a measure he promoted requiring gun owners to report lost or stolen weapons to the police.The governor also vetoed a bill expanding firefighters’ workers’ compensation claims for cancer caused by exposure to carcinogens on the job.He said the language put an unfair burden of proof on municipalities, and would have led to skyrocketing insurance costs.

    “For things like, as I said in my veto message, prostate cancer or brain cancer, there is no evidence whatsoever — scientific evidence — that anything you do, any of your activities, can promote those. And those are perhaps exclusively genetic,” said Rendell. “But there’s no scientific link. It would have been absolutely impossible to prove.”

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