Although Nebraska abolished the death penalty last month, Governor Pete Ricketts is adamant about executing inmates who were still sitting on death row before the repeal goes into effect, despite Nebraska’s current shortage of execution drugs. Ricketts recently approved purchase of drugs, including sodium thiopental, from India to complete the executions in a controversial move that the Federal and Drug Administration (FDA) deemed would be illegal.
FDA official Jeff Ventura, stated:
“At this time, we have no indication, aside from media reports, that sodium thiopental has recently been imported into the United States by state officials or correctional systems...With very limited exceptions, which do not apply here, it is unlawful to import this drug, and the FDA would refuse its admission into the United States.”
On Friday, June 12, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) sided with the FDA in a significant statement in which the DEA declared it would seize the illegally imported drugs if Ricketts carried through with his plan.
A statement e-mailed to KEYTV Omaha states in part:
"The DEA is in sync with the FDA on the importation of barbiturate anesthetics such as sodium thiopental from foreign companies. We allow their importation if they come from an FDA-approved source."
The drastic measures that lawmakers are currently taking to carry out the death penalty further prove its inherent moral depravity.
The National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty has created the 90 Million Strong Campaign to unite the voices of those who believe the death penalty is wrong. We need to demonstrate that the broad public support to end this practice is already here in America, and 90 million people speaking up can make a difference.