Historic debate on end-of-life bill about to beginBy Peter Hirschfeld
Staff Writer | February 12,2013Stefan Hard / Staff Photo
Sen. Claire Ayer, D-Addison, introduces end-of-life bill S. 77 Tuesday in the Senate Chamber of the Statehouse in Montpelier. Ayer is flanked on her right by Sen. Christopher Bray, D-Addison, and Sen. Peter Galbraith, D-Windham. Sen. Robert Hartwell, D-Bennington, is in the foreground right.Sen. Robert Hartwell sat alone in his committee room this morning, poring intently over “Robert Baxter versus the state of Montana.”
The 2009 case went all the way to the Montana Supreme Court, where judges weighed the legal implications of allowing doctors to hasten the deaths of their terminally ill patients. The Supreme Court ultimately said it could find “find no indication in Montana law that physician aid in dying provided to terminally ill, mentally competent adult patients is against public policy.”
Hartwell and the rest of the Senate will decide later today whether to enshrine in Vermont law a citizen’s right to request a lethal dose of medication from their doctor.
The drama surrounding today’s vote stems in part from the uncertainty of its outcome. Hartwell, a Bennington County Democrat, was among the four lawmakers who had yet to announce publicly where they stand.
Earlier today, the ranks of the undecideds shrank to three when Sen. John Rodgers announced that he’ll be voting in favor of the legislation.
The Senate chamber is packed today with supporters and opponents of a controversial legislation that promises to engender an inspired floor debate.
We’ll bring you updates on this historic debate throughout the morning and afternoon, and have the vote to you as soon as it’s counted.MORE IN This Just InSHELBURNE - Long-time Vermont television newsman Marselis Parsons has died. He was 70. Full StoryWhen Brookelyn Kimball was just 4, she began to struggle with everyday tasks. Full Story
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day 1739, 'Richard Palmer' identified in prison at York Castle as the notorious outlaw DICK TURPIN; IN 1836, Battle of the Alamo begins near San Antonio de Bexar, Texas; 1896, the Tootsie Roll invented by LEO HIRSCHFELD.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1472, Orkney, Shetland islands put up as collateral by Norway to Scotland in lieu of dowry for MARGARET OF DENMARK on her marriage with JAMES III, king of Scotland; 1962, JOHN GLENN first American to orbit Earth.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: City mayoral candidates debate campaign issues; Hartford, Conn., woman still missing; Neal Goswami reports attempts to legislate suicide; local woman loses 100 pounds through TOPS program.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1878, JOHN TUNSTALL murdered near Lincoln, New Mexico, by the outlaw JESSE EVANS; in 1930, ELM FARM OLLIE first cow to fly in aircraft, first to be milked airborne; 1955, nuke test WASP; '79, snow in Sahara.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Rutland Herald News Editor Alan J. Keays and staff writer Gordon Dritschilo discuss stories planned for the February 18, 2015, edition of the newspaper: Winter budgets maxed, legal marijuana, Springfield bank job, USPS slowdown
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1249 AD, ANDRE of LONGJUMEAU is dispatched by LOUIS IX of France to meet the KHAGAN, ruler of the Mongol Empire; in 1804, during 1st Barbary War, STEPHEN DECATUR scuttles the pirate-held USS Philadelphia in Tripoli.