>> The State of Arkansas set to execute two convicted prisoners Monday, before one of the state's lethal injection drugs expires at the end of the month. The drug, Midazolam, is one of three used by the state in capital punishment. It's meant to anesthetize the prisoner before two other drugs stop the heart and lungs.
But Arkansas and other states have faced difficulty obtaining it as drug makers increasingly refuse to supply chemicals for execution. Moreover Midazolam's effectiveness have been questioned. In at least two cases the drugs seems to have failed leaving inmates raving in pain inside the death chamber. Arkansas announced plans to put eight prisoners to death in just 11 days ahead of the drugs exploration at the end of April.
Subsequent court appeals stayed four of those sentences. Last week the state executed its first inmate in 12 years. On Monday, Jack Jones and Marcel Williams are set to die. Both men were convicted of separate rapes and murders in the 1990s. A rush of state In federal appeals are expected.
But last week the US Supreme Courts newly seated Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch indicated he's inclined to side with the court's conservatives and uphold the state's right to execute prisoners under law.