You might remember this observation from last spring:
[T]echnically, the firing squad is still authorized in Oklahoma — if both lethal injection and the electric chair should be found to be Constitutionally impermissible. This was a semi-clever maneuver by the legislature to make sure they had something to fall back on if the courts took issue with the drug cocktail.
Add to these two options the possibility of a third:
With no debate, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted 9-0 Tuesday to authorize “nitrogen hypoxia,” which depletes oxygen supply in the blood to cause death.
The bill’s author, Moore Republican Sen. Anthony Sykes, says it’s likely the bill will be amended before the session is over.
Three lethal injections remain on hold in Oklahoma while the U.S. Supreme Court considers whether Oklahoma’s three-drug method is constitutional.
At least they wouldn’t have to sweat supplies: half the tire shops in town have nitrogen-generating devices.
Last I looked, the title of SB 749 had been stricken, which requires some explanation:
Strike the Title: to change the title of a bill to a few words which are briefly descriptive but constitutionally unacceptable. The major intent of this action is to ensure that the bill will go to a conference committee. The same effect may be achieved by striking the enacting clause. Any Senate legislation being reported out of a Senate committee, with the exception of an appropriation bill, must have an enacting clause or resolving clause and a Senate and House author.
The opponents you might expect are, as expected, opposing:
Ryan Kiesel, Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union argues there is no humane way to kill someone and a bigger question needs to be discussed.
“These types of bills really miss the point. They miss the opportunity for Oklahoma to have a much broader and deeper conversation about if we should be in the business of executing people at all,” Kiesel said.
Say “gas chamber” to me, and the first thing I think of is Susan Hayward as Barbara Graham.
That’s “gas chamber.” With an S:
You may track the bill here.