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Portugal parliament votes on euthanasia bills

Staff Writer | May 29, 2018
Portugal's parliament is due to discuss and vote on four bills on the decriminalisation of medically assisted death on Tuesday, and the outcome is considered to be absolutely unpredictable.
Portugal euthanasia
Europe   The two main parties are allowing their members freedom to vote
Work on Tuesday will be entirely dedicated to the bills put forward by the People-Animal-Nature (PAN) party, the Left Bloc, Socialist Party (PS) and the Green Party, in a session that is expected to be long.

The two main parties, PS and PSD, which account for 175 of the 230 members of parliament, have not issued a party whip and are allowing their members freedom to vote according to their own conscience .

The Left Bloc and PAN are expected to vote in favour, as are the majority of PS members.

CDS and PCP are the only ones that announced a vote against, and many PSD members are also expected to vote against the bills.

The result will therefore depend on misaligned votes: the "yes" votes from the PSD and the "no" votes from PS members.

Undecided deputies, abstentions and those who may be absent on a parliamentary mission or for any other reason, also need to be taken into account.

Almost three hours are scheduled for the debate, followed by a nominal vote by the 230 members. Each member will have to say four times how they vote given that there are four bills - 920 votes (230 times four).