House Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) says his support for the death penalty is wavering as Gov. Mike DeWine's administration says it doesn’t think there’s a way to carry out executions that a federal court would find suitable.
Householder says the death penalty is the law, but he is personally becoming "less and less" supportive of the death penalty.
"For one, it's extremely expensive to put somebody to death in lieu of keeping them life in prison. And also, it's becoming more and more difficult to do an execution," Householder said. "Over the years we've gone from electrocution to lethal injection and now there's issues being raised about lethal injection so it's just becoming more and more difficult to do and it's more and more expensive."
In February, U.S. District Court Judge Michael Merz released an opinion calling the state's lethal injection protocol "cruel and unusual." The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction had been working on a revised protocol but ran into challenges, such as pharmaceutical companies refusing to sell drugs to states for executions.
While one state lawmaker has proposed using police-seized fentanyl for executions, DeWine says he’s told Householder and Senate President Larry Obhof that he doesn’t see a lethal injection method that would work under existing state law.