California Assembly approves assisted suicide bill

September 10, 2015

suicide 2A bill that would legalize assisted suicide for terminally ill patients passed the California Assembly Wednesday and now moves on to the State Senate, which has already endorsed similar legislation. [LA Times]

The Assembly voted 43-34 in favor of the End of Life Option Act, which would allow doctors to prescribe life-ending drugs to the terminally ill. If the bill were to become law, it would require patients to submit two oral requests and one written request for a lethal prescription.

The oral requests must come at least 15 days apart. The written one must be signed in front of two witnesses who state the patient is of sound mind and not under duress.

Three months ago, the Senate passed a similar bill. It stalled in the Assembly health committee, though.

Opponents of the bill have argued the legislation might result in people with disabilities being coerced into ending their lives prematurely. Assisted suicide bills previously failed in the Legislature in 2005 and 2007.

In 1992, California voters rejected an initiative that would have allowed physicians to administer lethal injections. The current proposal in the Legislature is modelled after an Oregon law that was adopted in 1997.

The Catholic Church is a leading proponent of the bill.

California Governor Jerry Brown is a former Jesuit seminary student who considered becoming a Catholic priest. The governor has yet to state his position on the assisted suicide legislation.

The Legislature concludes its current session at the end of this week.

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As an aging senior with a ‘chronic’ serious disease I worry about being subjected to painful, lenghthy extended suffering. Thankgoodness, our government has helped me feel better about my future. I need a choice.

The option of assisted suicide should have always been a right. I am relieved the State of California finally agrees.

Well…it quickly ca n become the “hypicritic” oath when a person has to suffer the ravages of cancer and other terminal diseases and the hands of medical professionals.

I’m all for the patient and or the family having the option of assisted suicide.

When this becomes law – if a doctor is morally opposed to prescribing life ending drugs, or believes it is in direct conflict with his/her hippocratic oath, will the doctor be thrown in jail for not honoring the request (like the anti gay marriage clerk)?

How long before an aggrieved family member sues the witnesses and the prescribing doctor claiming their relative was not of sound mind when the declarations were made?

Not saying I’m for or against, just some very interesting potential unintended consequences to this one.

Read the Oath below. The myth that a Doctor can not prescribe drugs that will remove pain and suffering at the end of like is just that, an old myth.

The clerk is in jail for breaking the law and contempt of court. nothing else

That’s the point of the comparison. The mercy killing prescription will become a statute, and thus law. If a Doctor does not abide by it, he is breaking the law unless the text says something like a “willing physician” (which it may).

I predict there will be “compassionate care” medical facilities which will soon be available.

Who is going to pay for all this passionate care? Have these details been addressed .

I am totally serious here with this question;

How is it that they can come up with a drug to end someones life that is terminally ill, but can’t use the same drug to end someones life that is condemned to death for a heinous crime?

Is there a difference that I am not aware of?

There has been a quick and painless method of execution available for many many years that uses no drugs or electricity or ropes or rifles. It is simple and effective, the problem with it is the person being executed will have a few moments of euphoria before dying.

It’s called using a hyperbaric chamber to induce extreme hypoxia. It’s what killed golfer Payne Stewart when his private jet lost cabin air pressure. Everyone in the plane simply went to sleep and died then later the plane ran out of fuel.

Again. The only argument I’ve ever seen against this method is that it is too peaceful and without pain.

All that said I’m against the practice in any form.

The Catholic Church is a proponent of the bill? That seems odd

So the people said no but a bill is passed anyway – just like licenses for illegals. Yup we are being heard in Sacramento – NOT

I think Cal Coast got that wrong. The Catholic Church is opposing the bill.

Our own Senator Bill Monning is the coauthor of this legislation. He represents Monterey and San Luis Obispo Counties. He’s the biggest go along Democrat in the Senate; he goes along with anything the Democrats want. In this case, however, he’s leading the way and not all Democrats agree.

How is it that SLO gets loser representation, Lois Capps, Bill Monning, Bruce Gibson, Adam Hill, Jan Marx, etc.? Better yet, how is it they keep getting re-elected? All Democrats I must say, along with Feistein, Boxer, and Brown we got the best of the best!test

Only in California would the Education czar make a statement that say “Yes, California SAT scores were the worst in the nation, but we graduated the majority of our students”. Well hell yea, they graduated, they did not have to take the exit exam this year. It is OK with our politicians we have the biggest majority of stupid of any state.

Our Superintendent of Schools in the rag today stated that our local schools surpassed the State average at 46 (less half) but we still have more work to do. You think. only 46% could pass the reading/understanding test. No wonder this State has so many stupid people in it!

“we have the biggest majority of stupid of any state”

Very true, as proven by your post.

Shoddy, did I spell it correctly?

I believe that is correct. Also proper usage of the word.

I don’t care how Katcho voted, I am just happy as a clam we are getting closer to allowing people to take control of their lives.

Now I don’t have to think about moving to Oregon if I had a terminal illness. And just because a doctor prescribed a pill does not mean the person would truly take it and end their life.

I think it would be so reassuring to know, you have that option SHOULD you choose to use it. It would help greatly with the anxiety that is present a lot of times as people realize the end is coming.

I know in Oregon very few people have actually followed through with the assisted suicide. There are a few diseases such as ALS I could see using this RX for instead of waiting for a natural death.

I hope we get this law soon.

It is a conflict of interest. Medical doctors take an oath to save lives, not commit premeditated murder.

You may want to read this, what you believe is a myth.


I swear to fulfill, to the best of my ability and judgment, this covenant:

I will respect the hard-won scientific gains of those physicians in whose steps I walk, and gladly share such knowledge as is mine with those who are to follow.

I will apply, for the benefit of the sick, all measures which are required, avoiding those twin traps of overtreatment and therapeutic nihilism.

I will remember that there is art to medicine as well as science, and that warmth, sympathy, and understanding may outweigh the surgeon’s knife or the chemist’s drug.

I will not be ashamed to say “I know not,” nor will I fail to call in my colleagues when the skills of another are needed for a patient’s recovery.

I will respect the privacy of my patients, for their problems are not disclosed to me that the world may know. Most especially must I tread with care in matters of life and death. If it is given me to save a life, all thanks. But it may also be within my power to take a life; this awesome responsibility must be faced with great humbleness and awareness of my own frailty. Above all, I must not play at God.

I will remember that I do not treat a fever chart, a cancerous growth, but a sick human being, whose illness may affect the person’s family and economic stability. My responsibility includes these related problems, if I am to care adequately for the sick.

I will prevent disease whenever I can, for prevention is preferable to cure.

I will remember that I remain a member of society, with special obligations to all my fellow human beings, those sound of mind and body as well as the infirm.

If I do not violate this oath, may I enjoy life and art, respected while I live and remembered with affection thereafter. May I always act so as to preserve the finest traditions of my calling and may I long experience the joy of healing those who seek my help.

Written in 1964 by Louis Lasagna, Academic Dean of the School of Medicine at Tufts University, and used in many medical schools today.

After spending a lot of time last night in trying to see how Katcho voted on this (I contacted his office several times before the vote and he was on the fence), I finally gave up. And, this article doesn’t have the info either, more shoddy reporting, does anyone know how Katcho voted?

Read the article. It;s an L.A, Times piece. Why would the times focu on Katcho? Not shoddy reporting.

If CNN is merely going to forward someone else’s work, they might as well go the extra inch and tell us how our Assemblyman voted. It would have taken just an ounce of effort. BTW, I called Katcho’s office, he voted no.