Tuesday, February 20, 2024

The assisted suicide lobby wants to legalize assisted suicide in your state and expand the law later.

Alex Schadenberg
Executive Director, Euthanasia Prevention Coalition.

In 2024, 20 states are debating (have debated) assisted suicide legalization bills and 4 states are debating assisted suicide law expansion bills.

The 20 states are: 

*Arizona, Delaware, *Florida, Illinois, *Indiana, *Iowa, Kentucky, *Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, *Missouri, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, *Tennessee, *Virginia and *Wisconsin. The * means that the bill has died.

The good news is that no new state has legalized assisted suicide in the past two years. The bad news it that the assisted suicide lobby is relentless.

The assisted suicide lobby claims that no slippery slope exists, yet, in the past few years existing assisted suicide laws have been expanded by: reducing or eliminating waiting periods, allowing non-doctors to participate in assisted suicide, allowing assisted suicide approvals by Tele-health, expanding the meaning of terminal illness and removing state residency requirements

Assisted suicide law expansion bills were passed in California (2021), Hawai'i (2023), Oregon (2019, 2023), Vermont (2022, 2023) and Washington State (2023).

In states with an active assisted suicide bill, contact your elected representatives and inform them that in nearly every state assisted suicide law has been expanded since legalization.

There are 4 states that are debating the expansion of assisted suicide in their state.

Colorado assisted suicide expansion bill.

For instance, the Colorado assisted suicide Bill SB 068 will expand the assisted suicide law by: permitting non-physicians to prescribe the assisted suicide poison, reduces the waiting period from 15 days to 48 hours and it allows the 48 hour waiting period to be waived, and it will remove the residency requirement to permit suicide tourism in Colorado.

Colorado citizens legalized assisted suicide by approving Proposition 106 in 2016. Proposition 106 was designed to legalize assisted suicide. Now the assisted suicide lobby is expanding the assisted suicide law beyond the "safeguards" contained in Proposition 106.

The assisted suicide lobby knows that it is harder to legalize assisted suicide than to expand it later.

For instance Connecticut opponents of assisted suicide have successfully stopped the legalization of assisted suicide every year, for 11 consecutive years. 

Josh Elliott, a three term member of the Connecticut House, and a sponsor of previous assisted suicide bills was interviewed by Paul Bass for the New Haven Independent on January 4, 2024. Bass reported:

Elliott has been sponsoring bills for years to allow terminally ill people to take their lives (aka ​“aid in dying”). The bill finally passed the legislature’s Public Health committee; it got stuck in Judiciary.

The version he plans to resubmit this year has been narrowed to cover terminally ill people with prognoses of less than six months to live, with sign-offs from two doctors and a mental health professional, monthly check-ins, and at least a year of state residence.

“Almost no one” would qualify under that restricted version of the law, Elliott said. But passing it would open the door to evaluation and expansion.

For further clarification Elliott told Bass in the wider interview at 21:30 that:

The bill would be, um, exceptionally narrow in scope, it would be the most narrow in scope bill of this kind were we to pass it. It would be, uh, six months left to live, you have to get sign-offs from multiple doctors—two doctors and one mental health physician—uh, and then you need to go for frequent check ins—I think it's like once a month—and you have, there is a one year residency requirement, so there are so many ways we limit who could actually use this bill, to the point I believe if we were actually to implement the way that we are talking about it, almost nobody would use it. But the important thing for me is to get this bill on the books, and then see how it's working, and if it's not and people aren't using it, than make those corrections to actually allow people to use it. So that is what we've been discussing.
Elliott explains his "bait and switch" tactic. His goal is to pass a "restrictive" assisted suicide bill and then expand the law later.

J.M. Sorrell, Executive Director of Massachusetts Death with Dignity, was quoted on a similar bill as saying,

“Once you get something passed, you can always work on amendments later.”

The assisted suicide lobby admits to their 'bait and switch' tactic.

The key to holding the line on assisted suicide is to defeat assisted suicide legalization bills. To defeat an assisted suicide bill we need to call it what it is. The purpose of assisted suicide is to cause death.

Another key to defeating assisted suicide bills is to explain the language of the assisted suicide bill. Legislators who support assisted suicide often vote based on ideology but when a legislator knows what the assisted suicide bill actually says, they will often vote NO.

The assisted suicide lobby uses false terminology to sell assisted suicide as a form of healthcare and they claim that it provides "choice" at the end-of-life. Assisted suicide is not healthcare or aid in dying and it provides death.

Oregon and Vermont have already been withdrawn their assisted suicide law residency requirement, allowing death tourism. The assisted suicide lobby is now pushing Colorado and New Jersey to permit death tourism.

In October 2021, the assisted suicide lobby launched a court case challenging the Oregon assisted suicide residency requirement. In March, 2022 the Oregon government agreed and removed their residency requirement.

A February 2023 article by James Reinl published in the Daily Mail reported that Dr Nicholas Gideonse had opened an assisted suicide clinic in Oregon to prescribe lethal assisted suicide poison for death tourists.

In August, 2022, the assisted suicide lobby launched a lawsuit challenging Vermont's assisted suicide residency requirement. Lisa Rathke reported in March, 2023 for the Associated Press that Vermont's attorney general's office reached an agreement with the assisted suicide lobby and dropped Vermont's assisted suicide residency requirement.

In August, 2023 the assisted suicide lobby launched a lawsuit to force New Jersey to drop its assisted suicide residency requirement.
As stated earlier, Colorado assisted suicide Bill SB 068 will remove their assisted suicide law residency requirement and permit death tourism.

The assisted suicide lobby is aware that they will not legalize assisted suicide in every state but by forcing states to permit death tourism, enables assisted suicide to become available to every American.
Say NO to assisted suicide. 

More resource articles on this topic:
  • The Nationalization of assisted suicide in America (Link).
  • Minnesota assisted suicide bill is lethally deceptive (Link). 
  • EPC-USA statement to the New York legislature (Link).
  • The assisted suicide lobby pass restrictive bills and expand them later (Link).

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