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Montana Came Close to Stopping Assisted Suicide         


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Montana Came Close to Stopping Assisted Suicide         
Status of assisted suicide in state remains ambiguous.A Montana Supreme Court ruling in 2009 determined, “A terminally ill patient’s consent to physician aid in dying constitutes a statutory defense to a charge of homicide against the aiding physician.”
Those words effectively allowed physician assisted suicide – with no input from the Montana legislature. Since then, opponents and supporters of assisted suicide have tried almost every year to introduce bills to regulate or to ban assisted suicide. None of those measures succeeded.
The latest measure to ban assisted suicide came ever so close to succeeding but a last-minute vote resulted in a 50-50 tie — resulting in a defeat of the measure.
Specifically, a second reading of the bill to ban physician-prescribed suicide passed on a 52-48 vote. However, a third reading the following day resulted in a change of four legislators’ votes and the 50-50 tie. The measure failed to advance in the Montana legislature.
The final vote can only be described as an error on one legislator’s part: Peggy Webb, a Republication who opposes assisted suicide, mistakenly voted for the measure: “I hit yes and then thought, ‘No, I don’t want assisted suicide,’ and changed the vote. It was too late to change it back.” [SOURCE: 3/4/27 – BioEdge.org
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