Maryland Bill Fails That Would Have Made the State the Next to Legalize Assisted Suicide

State   |   Jeff Quinton   |   Mar 4, 2016   |   2:24PM   |   Annapolis, MD

Legislation that would allow physician-assisted suicide in Maryland is dead, after Senator Ron Young, sponsor of it, put it out of its misery.

Sen. Lisa Gladden and Sen. Jamie Raskin had pledged support for the bill in the Judicial Proceedings committee but no one else on the committee had. Five members already opposed it. Of the four members left, two also later said they opposed it, which caused Young to withdraw it.

The Hemlock Society, under its new name Compassion & Choices, say they will keep pushing for the legislation while Maryland Right to Life warned in an email about the House version of it. The House version would have to go through the Senate Judicial Proceedings committee if it passed the House, so it may not even come up on the House side after today’s actions.

Here’s what Young told The Washington Post:

“Every demographic group supports it,” he said. “Catholics support it, Jews support it, African Americans support it, Republicans support it. More than 50 percent of every group supports it and the general public, 65 percent. But I think people on the committee let their own views come in.”

Young may have some public opinion polls where he has people self-identifying, but Catholic self-identification is largely inflated in public opinion polls for various reasons. It would be interesting to see polling of those who regularly attend Mass to see what they think. Additionally, opposition to assisted suicide is a part of church law.

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I previously wrote about attempts to pass an assisted-suicide bill last year and included some of the issues with this type of legislation.

I noted the applicable Catholic teachings, specific problems with this legislation, as well as the fact that physician-assisted suicide is opposed by the American Medical Association, the American College of Physicians, the American Nurses Association, the National Hospice & Palliative Care Organization, the National Council on Disability, and several other medical groups.

LifeNews Note: Jeff Quinton is the author of the Quinton Report, based in Maryland, where this originally appeared.