UPDATE: Assisted Suicide

Posted Wednesday --- January 23, 2008

Wis. lawmakers hear emotional debate on assisted suicide

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Wisconsin lawmakers have opened an emotional debate on a bill that would legalize physician-assisted suicide.

Supporters and opponents are testifying Wednesday in front of a Senate committee on a bill sponsored by Sen. Fred Risser and Rep. Frank Boyle.

The Democrats have pushed for the bill for 16 years, but Boyle says the hearing is the first on the idea in a decade.

The plan is modeled on an Oregon law and would allow patients suffering from terminal disease as confirmed by two doctors to request a lethal dose of medicine.

Risser says the plan would give those patients the freedom to choose when to die.

But some Wisconsin doctors and other critics say the state should not help people end their lives.


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