Reason Magazine has been reporting on Arkansas’s ongoing attempt to execute 8 people in 10 days, and in Reason writer, Ed Krayewski’s latest story, he wrote,
The Arkansas State Supreme Court has stayed tonight’s planned executions, which would have been the first of up to eight executions set to take place before the end of the month, when the state’s supply of midazolam expires.
Krayewski also interviewed me for the story and reported,
Marc Hyden, the national advocacy coordinator for Conservatives Concerned about the Death Penalty, an anti-death penalty group, also stressed the risk Arkansas’ planned execution spree posed to corrections officers. “The speed of executions they want to carry out in Arkansas using an unstable drug will increase the risk of botched executions,” Hyden told Reason, “putting corrections officers through an incredible amount of stress and trauma.”
“These people have probably never executed anyone,” Hyden noted, “and now you’re asking for two executions a day.”
Hyden also said Arkansas’ frenetic pace worked to further weaken support for the death penalty, saying he received a text message from one Tea Party leader who said she found what Arkansas was doing “disgusting” despite supporting the death penalty.
“You’re truncating the time people have to make appeals,” Hyden said. “There’s a lot of issues playing into this by compressing this time period, and I think this is bothering a lot of conservatives whether they support the death penalty or not.”
Hyden also noted that despite efforts to “sanitize” the death penalty through the use of lethal injections, botched executions like the ones involving midazolam, reveal the government incompetence at play in administering the death penalty. “You see what happens, there’s the human element, and the potential for error, for government incompetence.”