Assisted Suicide Backers Have 600K to Spend in Washington for Ballot Measure

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 9, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Assisted Suicide Backers Have 600K to Spend in Washington for Ballot Measure

by Steven Ertelt Editor
October 9
, 2008

Olympia, WA ( — While most of the nation and the pro-life community is focused on the presidential race, residents of Washington are concerned their state may become the second in the country to legalize assisted suicide. Backers have raised substantial amounts of money for it and still have over $600,000 left to spend.

The political action committee of the pro-euthanasia group Compassion & Choices has a war chest of $627,500 that stands ready to be spent in the final weeks of the campaign.

The group is expected to use the funds to bombard voters with misleading ads about the supposed safety net in association with the assisted suicide law, even though a new Oregon report shows major problems there.

According to records the Seattle Post-Intelligencer obtained, the local group promoting Initiative 1000 has received most of its money from its fellow euthanasia group and eight out of state donors, including an Ohio resident.

While assisted suicide backers claim the Catholic Church and pro-life groups are pouring money into the state, the pro-assisted suicide group has raised $2.647 million compared to just $847,447 for the Coalition Against Assisted Suicide.

Dan Kennedy, the head of Human Life of Washington, says the battle is a "modern day David and Goliath encounter," but one where he thinks the coalition of pro-life advocates, medical professionals and disability rights advocates will be victorious.

"The duty to die proponents of this initiative hope to win the vote through bigotry, big money, and a facade of compassion," he told "Voters of Washington State have rejected this in the past, as has every other state where they’ve tried to force their will on the voters."

"Once informed, Washington voters shouldn’t be fooled or coerced into signing their own death warrant," he said.

However, without the funds to compete on television, opponents of I-1000 need pro-life advocates in Washington and across the country to help the educational effort.

Brian Johnston, the head of the California Pro-Life Council and an author of a seminal book on assisted suicide, urges pro-life advocates to get involved in the debate in Washington.

"Because of the importance of the Presidential race, what is happening in Washington is under the radar, but it should not be ignored by pro-life voters," he told

"Most of the pro-death support is coming from out of state. We should do the same," he said.

Related web sites:
Human Life of Washington –

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