He is not afraid to die; he cannot afford to. He is, after all, the Governor, the voice and face of the people of Varos. Someone has to stand strong for what they believe is right, so let it be him.
He remembers how he became Governor --- drawing lots with his fellow officers as if they were schoolchildren. How fitting for a prison planet run by the children of the old guard, only now the jailhouse has become a playground for the scientists to wreak habit onto their prisoners and the idea of punishment has become profitable. Civilized planets buying their recordings of executions and tortures; if he hadn't become immune to it, he'd be sickened by the whole thing.
It is for the good of the people he sits in his poisoned throne time after time, not because of the imminent death hanging above his head, ever present even as the lights die down and he survives another vote, another appearance before the unforgiving Viewpop and their voting buttons. It is for the good of the people he has been sitting here, time after time, fighting for their rights even as it seems the universe would like nothing better then to see the entire Varosian population fall to their knees in prostration eternal. So if it is time for that naked sword to fall upon his neck, he'll keep it at bay for the longest he can. That's how so many former governors have survived --- and perished. The last great gasp for life in the never ending line of governorships, staring their people in the eye as they plead for another chance.
Alone, he grips the arms of the chair one last time before the red light cues the start of broadcast.