South Australian euthanasia bill ‘almost certainly won’t pass,’ MP admits to LifeSiteNews
ADELAIDE, Australia, November 1, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – South Australian pro-euthanasia MP Bob Such has openly admitted to LifeSiteNews.com today that his latest euthanasia bill “almost realistically won’t pass.”
This latest euthanasia bill, introduced Thursday in the South Australian Parliament, is the seventh bill of its type in South Australia in the last three years, according to Director of HOPE, Paul Russell.
MP Such says the Ending Life with Dignity (No.2) Bill 2013 is a “significantly modified” version of the bill with the same title introduced into the same house in February this year.
Yet speaking with LifeSiteNews, Such admitted that the changes were essentially legal and technical modifications that were suggested by The Law Society of South Australia.
The earlier euthanasia bill is still on the parliamentary notice paper also awaiting debate. Such said that he would not hesitate to pull his other private members’ bills, including the earlier euthanasia bill, because, “The V.E. bill comes first.”
According to Russell the latest bill “suffers from much of the same flaws as the earlier model. The changes are largely cosmetic.”
The current parliament in South Australia is only weeks away from its final sitting day before parliament closes down for the last time before the state election in March next year. With only two days of opportunities for debate, even if by some twist the bill were to pass in the current chamber, a full debate in the Upper House is beyond possibility, assuring that neither version of Such’s euthanasia bills will pass.
Such acknowledges this, adding that his is a “long term campaign” and that he hopes, over the next few weeks, to progress the bill past the second reading vote and into committee – something that has eluded him to date and that he sees as a “milestone” in his campaign.
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Such has been the driving force behind the majority of euthanasia bills in South Australia in the past few years. In 2012, his bill was designed for people in the “terminal phase of a terminal illness.”
He claimed in his speech at the time, “If palliative care is working, then I do not believe you need prematurely to end a life. You have to be in the final phase of a terminal illness.” But his two bills this year have an expanded scope that require the person simply to be terminally ill – in other words, not imminently in danger of dying.
“He can’t have it both ways,” said Russell. “Moreover, in regard to all three bills he claims that he would expect only about a dozen people to access euthanasia in any year, yet the change in criteria would suggest otherwise.”
“What this is really about is finding a formula where the majority of MPs will be convinced that the legislation is safe,” Russell said. “No euthanasia legislation is ever safe; vulnerable people will always be at risk – it’s just part of the DNA of every [euthanasia] bill.”