Image: New Zeland Herald

Oklahoma lawmakers are pushing for the state to become the first to allow the use of nitrogen gas as a back-up method to execute death row prisoners. The bill passed the state Senate Judiciary Committee and will now head to the floor for a vote.

The Committee voted 8-0 on Tuesday to move forward with a House-passed measure that would grant the use of nitrogen gas in executions. Under the bill, lethal injection would remain the state’s primary method of execution, but using a gas chamber would be an alternative should lethal injection be declared unconstitutional or the drugs become unavailable.

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