National | End of Life Choice Act

Kiwis vote for euthanasia but jittery on cannabis

New Zealanders have voted for the End of Life Choice Act 2019 but rejected the proposed Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill.

The Electoral Commission today released the preliminary results of the two referendums. The preliminary results are based on the count of ordinary votes cast in advance and on election day and do not include special declaration votes. The final results will be released next Friday with the final election results.

A clear 65.2% (1,574,645 votes) supported the End of Life Choice Act 2019 coming into force, with 815,829 voters (33.8%) opposed and informal votes 1% at 25,073. Informal votes are those where voting papers are either not marked or the voter’s intention is not clear.

The act was shepherded through Parliament by Act Party leader David Seymour.

When voters were asked if they supported the proposed Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, 53.1% (1,281,818 votes) opposed it while 46.1% (1,114,485 votes) supported it and 19,244 or 0.8%  votes were informal.

The cannabis  bill had gained considerable support in the hope that it would reduce the number of  Māori and Pasifika with minor drug convictions that affect their job  prospects.