- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 14, 2014

A lawmaker in Wyoming says the state ought to take action now to avoid a constitutional crisis if lethal injection for convicts is ever outlawed and pass a bill to allow for the return of firing squads.

Besides, the lawmaker said, firing squads are economically sensible.

Sen. Bruce Burns said that right now, state law only allows for a gas chamber to be used in place of a lethal injection, The Associated Press reported. But that causes a dilemma in his mind.

“The state of Wyoming doesn’t have a gas chamber currently, an operating gas chamber, so the procedure and expense to build one would be impractical to me,” he said, AP reported. “I consider, frankly, the gas chamber to be cruel and unusual, so I went with firing squad because they also have it in Utah.”

He brought forward a bill for lawmakers to consider.

“One of the reasons I chose firing squad as opposed to any other form of execution is because frankly, it’s one of the cheapest for the state,” said Mr. Burns, in the report. “The expense of building a gas chamber, I think, would be prohibitive when you consider how many people would be executed by it, and even the cost of gallows.”

Mr. Burns said he brought the matter to the legislative forefront because some states have reported a shortfall of the chemicals that are used in the lethal injection procedure.