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Posted 24 Feb 2001   For week ended July 23, 2000
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News about Mormons, Mormonism,
and the LDS Church
Sent on Mormon-News: 26Jul00

Summarized by Kent Larsen

Bill To Overturn Oregon Assisted Suicide Law Approaches Vote

WASHINGTON, DC -- The political struggle over Oregon's physician-assisted suicide law may reach a vote in the US Senate soon, as the Senate considers the Pain Relief Promotion Act, which would essentially overturn the Oregon law. The LDS Church opposed the Oregon law when it was passed by referendum in 1994 and again in a 1997 effort to overturn it. Oregon Senator Gordon Smith, an LDS Church member, decided in April to support the Pain Relief Promotion Act, going against the wishes of the majority of his constituents.

On Friday, Senator Don Nickles (R-Okla.), the 2nd ranking Republican in the Senate, said that he is prepared to force a vote on the bill, in spite of a filibuster threat from Oregon's other Senator, Ron Wyden. Under the Senate's rules, Wyden can tie up the Senate, because the rules allow unlimited debate on a bill. To end the debate and force a vote, Nickles would need 60 Senators to sign a cloture petition. Drawing on loyalty and trading favors, Wyden may be able to get enough supporters to keep the debate open, in spite of broad support to pass the bill.

Still, Nickles says he has enough votes to end the filibuster, if necessary, and expects a vote before the August break.


Deal may force vote on suicide debate
Portland OR Oregonian 22Jul00 N2
By Jim Barnett: The Oregonian Staff


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