ACTION ALERT: Senate set to gut transparency regarding lethal injection

posted Mar 22, 2013, 11:40 AM by Kathryn Hamoudah   [ updated Mar 22, 2013, 11:42 AM ]



We write today to ask you to take immediate action on a piece of legislation that impacts Georgia’s process of carrying out the death penalty.


The Georgia legislature is rapidly advancing a bill that will shield Georgia’s lethal injection process from public scrutiny. On Wednesday, a last minute amendment was attached to House Bill 122, a bill that has nothing to do with the death penalty, that will designate as state secrets much information related to the lethal injection process and the drugs used.


More information can be found in an article by Bill Rankin at the Atlanta Journal Constitution here and in a column buy Charlie Harper, editor of the conservative blog Peach Pundit here.

The current version of the bill with this added language is not available online yet.


As many of you know, the State of Georgia has come under a lot of scrutiny for its participation in the illegal importation and distribution of drugs used in executions. The Georgia Department of Corrections has proven that if anything they should have more oversight not less.


It is critical that the Legislators and the Governor knows that we must preserve and protect accountability and transparency.  


HB 122 is on the floor TODAY.  Please contact your Georgia State Senator, Georgia State Representative and the Governor and tell them that you oppose HB 122 as amended by the Senate Judiciary Non Civil committee. To identify the member of the Georgia House of Representatives and Senator that represents you, please visit: and plug in your 9-digit zip code. To look up your 9-digit zip code, please visit: ZIP Code Lookup.


If HB 122 passes in its current form, it would arguably make everything about how the state carries out its gravest duty a state secret.  The Georgia Department of Corrections has said that due to drug shortages, it will soon have to rely upon compounding pharmacies to manufacture the Pentobarbital it needs for executions. HB 122 as written would shield everything about the process of manufacturing that drug from the public.  This is information that is critical for the public to be able to review, and it is imperative that we preserve transparency and accountability in the GA Department of Corrections. The passage of HB 122 as written will also likely lead to litigation, as in Texas, where a similarly over broad provision was struck down by the courts. 

Thanks for your help in advance!