California Attorney General Appeals To Keep Assisted Suicide Legal

 

Photo of Grace CarrGRACE CARR, Reporter

California’s Attorney General Xavier Becerra appealed a judge’s ruling on assisted suicide in an effort to make physician-assisted suicide legal once more in The Golden State.

The AG’s appeal comes after Judge Daniel Ottolia ruled May 15 that California’s lawmakers had not passed the measure properly, thus overturning a Californian’s right to physician-assisted suicide in the state, according to The Hill.

Becerra asked the judge in his Monday appeal to not only reconsider his ruling, but to also keep the law in place during litigation. It is likely the judge will grant Becerra’s request, according to End of Life Liberty Project attorney Kathryn Tucker, the Los Angeles Times reported

The measure, signed into law by Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown in 2015, allows terminally ill patients older than 18 to request a fatal dosage of medication.

“It would be a comfort to be able to consider the options afforded by this bill,” Brown said when he signed the bill, according to the LA Times. “And I wouldn’t deny that right to others.”

The law determines a person is terminally ill if they are not expected to live longer than six months. The bill claims patients who want to kill themselves with medication have to make an oral request for the drug, a written request and a second oral request to confirm they have not changed their mind about the decision to kill themselves. (RELATED: Renowned Scientist Kills Himself At Swiss Suicide Clinic)

“It is no surprise that those who are willing to advance policies like California’s assisted suicide law, and thereby put the lives of countless vulnerable people at risk, have no qualms about circumventing the legislative process,” Executive Director of Patients Rights Action Fund (PRAF) Matt Valliere told The Daily Caller News Foundation Tuesday in an email. “We hope that this effort to appeal the ruling of Judge Ottolia fails so that people with terminal illness, disabilities, advanced age, and economic challenges will be liberated from this dangerous public policy.” 

Hawaii, Colorado, Oregon, Vermont, Montana and Washington also permit physician-assisted suicide. Washington, D.C. adopted the Death with Dignity Act in July 2017. (RELATED: DC Now Letting Patients Choose Physician-Assisted Suicide)

Assisted suicide in the Netherlands is legal for anyone who suffers from physical or mental illness and has an advanced directive or has received parental consent if younger than 16. Minors can request euthanasia as young as 12. The law states parents must be involved in the decision-making processes of 16- and 17-year-olds, but it does not require parental consent. Those who desire assisted suicide must express an earnest conviction that they see euthanasia as their only escape and obtain a doctor’s signature.

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