Maryland's death penalty moratorium will almost certainly be lifted after Republican Gov.-elect Robert Ehrlich takes office Wednesday, opening the way for the execution of as many as 12 inmates. All executions in Maryland were suspended last May by Democratic Gov. Parris Glendening, who did not seek re-election this fall. The incoming and outgoing administrations disagree on exactly when and how the moratorium officially ends, but Ehrlich has made it clear he will end it. And death warrants could be signed within a few weeks for at least two inmates. "Right now we're up approaching the wall. Pretty soon we'll be up against it," said Fred Warren Bennett, lawyer for inmate Steven Oken, who could face a death warrant as soon as the moratorium ends. The moratorium is one only two in the nation. Illinois Republican Gov. George Ryan suspended all executions three years ago, and his successor, Democrat Rod Blagojevich, who took office Monday, has said he will continue the moratorium. One down and one to go.