From our content partner, the Arkansas News Bureau:

Gov. Mike Beebe has decided to hold off on setting execution dates because of litigation over Arkansas’ execution law and problems with its death penalty protocol, a spokesman for the governor said Tuesday.

Attorney General Dustin McDaniel last month asked Beebe to set execution dates for seven condemned killers after the state Supreme Court declared stays that had been granted to six of them from a previous case challenging Arkansas’ old lethal-injection procedure were no longer in effect.

Beebe spokesman Matt DeCample said Tuesday that a legal challenge of a new execution law adopted this year was a factor in the governor’s decision to defer setting executions dates, along with problems with the procedure for actually carrying out the death penalty.

“The drug that we acquired, the manufacturer has made clear they don’t want used for executions,” DeCample said, “and there is strong uncertainty whether we would even be able to use the drugs we have now before they expire, just due to the legal entanglements.”

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