Saturday, December 3, 2022

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Group wants rollbacks of some IA voting restrictions; RSV, Flu, COVID: KY faces "Triple Threat" this winter; Appeals court halts special master review of documents seized at Mar-a-Lago.

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The Senate passes a bill forcing a labor agreement in an effort to avoid a costly railway worker strike. The House Ways and Means Committee has former President Trump's tax returns in hand. The Agriculture Committee is looking at possible regulations for cryptocurrency following the collapse of cryptocurrency giant FTX. The Supreme Court will be reviewing the legality of Biden s student debt relief program next year. Anti-semitic comments from Ye spark the deletion of tweets from the the House Judiciary Committee GOP's Twitter account.

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The first-ever "trout-safe" certification goes to an Idaho fish farm, the Healthy Housing Initiative helps improve rural communities' livability, and if Oklahoma is calling to you, a new database makes it easier for buyers and builders to find available lots.

CT Woman Challenges VT's Medical Aid-in-Dying Law

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Wednesday, August 31, 2022   

A nonprofit group is suing the state of Vermont on behalf of a terminally ill Connecticut woman.

At issue is Vermont's medical aid-in-dying law, which law stipulates only residents of Vermont are eligible for the services the law allows.

Lynda Bluestein, a Connecticut resident and plaintiff in the lawsuit, was diagnosed with Stage Three fallopian-tube cancer, her third diagnosis in three years. But a bill to create a medical aid-in-dying law failed in the Connecticut Legislature.

Bluestein feels people with terminal illnesses should have the right to end their suffering on their terms, no matter where they live.

"I can't hold my breath for Connecticut, this place that I love, my home," Bluestein asserted. "This is where I get all of my care, I have my network of friends, my support system. They're all here. People say, 'Why don't you just move to Vermont and drop the lawsuit?' Well, just moving isn't just moving for anybody."

The lawsuit was filed by the group Compassion & Choices. Should it be decided against her, Bluestein would have to move to Vermont and establish residency. Washington, D.C. and 10 states have medical aid-in-dying laws with residency requirements, and Oregon's requirement was eliminated in March, after a legal challenge.

What constitutes "residency" is a particular question in the lawsuit. Under the current law, a doctor could find one person is a Vermont resident, but the state's attorney general might disagree.

Ronald Shems, local counsel to Compassion & Choices, sees the residency requirement as unconstitutional. He said, like the U.S. Supreme Court decision overturned Roe v. Wade, it creates another state-level health care disparity.

"Health care services should not be limited or dependent on the state you live in," Shems contended. "Disease doesn't really recognize state boundaries. I think that there's a practical humanity that underlies our effort."

Shems suggested the residency requirement may also violate the Commerce Clause in the Constitution, because it limits services in one state. The case is in the U.S. District Court in Vermont.


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