ACT Leader David Seymour is calling on Members of Parliament in New Zealand to show the same sense of public service as New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy when considering their vote on the End of Life Choice Bill.
On Friday, Governor Murphy signed into law the Medical Aid in Dying for the Terminally Ill Act which will come into effect in August allowing those with a terminal prognosis of less than six months the ability to end their lives in a dignified manner under a strictly safeguarded process.
Governor Murphy, a lifelong Catholic, said he had wrestled with whether or not to sign the legislation which passed in the Senate last month but he ultimately put his faith to one side to act in the interest of all New Jersey residents.
He wrote, “I have concluded that, while my faith may lead me to a particular decision for myself, as a public official I cannot deny this alternative to those who may reach a different conclusion.”
“I believe this choice is a personal one and, therefore, signing this legislation is the decision that best respects the freedom and humanity of all New Jersey resident.”
In 2015, California Governor Jerry Brown also took the principled stand of putting his Catholic faith to one side when signing in to law the End of Life Option Act, saying, “I do not know what I would do if I were dying in prolonged and excruciating pain. I am certain, however, that it would be a comfort to be able to consider the options afforded by this bill. And I wouldn’t deny that right to others.”
“Members of Parliament who I won’t name have told me that they won’t support my bill due to their faith,” says Mr Seymour.
“I hope they will consider the leadership shown by Governors Murphy and Brown, take a principled stand, and vote for choice for the 75% of New Zealanders who want an assisted dying law in New Zealand.”