Anybody else surprised that Bush hasn't yet attacked Kerry on his opposition to the death penalty? For all the drop in crime (and the ensuing decline in support for capital punishment), Americans still back it by a margin of about 2-to-1.
(1) Many of the key states in this presidential election don't have the death penalty, e.g. Iowa, Wisconsin, But Florida is legendary for its support of capital punishment.
(2) Bush doesn't want to spark a wave of stories discussing all the executions in Texas when he was governor. He may also fear the media tagging him as a racist.
(3) Crime just doesn't appear to be a major issue with voters this year.
(4) Bush has carefully wooed the Catholic Church all throughout his administration. Bringing up the death penalty might jeopardize this effort.