"(The state) doesn't have the drugs to carry out lethal injection now and it's very very difficult for it to get the drugs."
- Dr. Eric Berger, UNL Law Professor and Lethal Injection Expert
Nebraska lacks the means to carry out an execution
Nebraska currently has no supply or source of lethal injection drugs. Lethal injection became the sole method of execution in 2009 and has never been used.
The state hasn't carried out an execution since 1997. Having an unenforceable death penalty on the books is a waste of taxpayer dollars and makes every death sentence an empty promise for victims' families.
Nebraskans won't accept secrecy
Every state that's currently able to carry out executions has some form of 'shield law' - which protects the anonymity of lethal injection drug suppliers. Department of corrections director Scott Frakes acknowledges that without such a law, it will be "very difficult" to use the death penalty in Nebraska. In 2017, a 'shield law' bill was introduced in Nebraska but, received very little support because of Nebraskans' commitment to government transparency.
The Nebraska department of corrections has attempted to purchase lethal injection drugs multiple times from an unauthorized supplier.  None of the drugs were ever able to be used. In 2016, the state requested a refund for a purchase that was not able to be delivered. The request was denied.
Buzzfeed - "This is the man in India who is selling states illegally imported execution drugs"
Buzzfeed - "Nebraska bought 300 executions' worth of illegal execution drugs from a foreign supplier"
1. Testimony to the Nebraska Judiciary Committee, February 9th, 2017
2. C. Matteson, "Maker of lethal injection drug wants it back," Lincoln Journal-Star November 29th, 2011
3. J. Dugan, "Broker denies Nebraska's $26,700 refund request over undelivered death penalty drug," Omaha World-Herald March 7th, 2016