NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A scarcity of lethal injection drugs for death-row inmates — and increasing concern about new sources for the drugs — has prompted a nationwide debate about whether the method of execution is still feasible or humane.
While the rest of the country discusses the issue, Tennessee has come up with its own alternative: the electric chair.
Republican Gov. Bill Haslam signed a bill into law Thursday allowing the state to electrocute death row inmates in the event prisons are unable to obtain the drugs. The drugs have become more and more scarce following a European-led boycott of drug sales for executions.
Tennessee lawmakers overwhelmingly passed the electric chair legislation in April, with the Senate voting 23-3 and the House 68-13 in favor of the bill.