The fight for the frail, the elderly and frightened indigenous people has gone out of the Coalition.
This week in Parliament, Liberal leader Peter Dutton and Nationals leader David Littleproud both voted for euthanasia.
A bill passed the House of Representatives on Wednesday allowing the territories to green light the euthanising of patients.
Indigenous Australians, who live disproportionately in the Northern Territory, are opposed for cultural reasons to euthanasia and many will now fear going to hospital.
The Coalition leadership abandoned the “do no harm ethic” of medicine, ignoring the overseas evidence of euthanasia’s slippery slope.
It is well-known that patients who are offered proper palliative care rarely ask for euthanasia.
It’s also well known that so-called “safeguards” do not work, with the mentally ill and even children now being euthanised in overseas jurisdictions amid the watering down of consent requirements.
Yet Dutton and Littleproud sided with the radical left and the libertarian right’s utilitarian view of human life.
It’s easier to dodge the culture wars than face questions from a media that overwhelmingly supports euthanasia.
They took the easy way out and waved through the bill giving territories the right to introduce euthanasia.
One Liberal MP who did put up a fight was Shadow Indigenous Affairs Minister Julian Leeser.
A Jew, Leeser gave the parliament a poignant history lesson which sadly fell on deaf ears.
“In this regard, and in a very personal sense, I cannot forget what the most civilised and enlightened society in Europe—which wiped out six million of my people in the Holocaust—began their program of industrial murder by euthanising vulnerable disable people who were thought to be in pain,” Leeser told Parliament.
Despite Leeser’s brilliance, the early signs are that the Coalition will not go back to its conservative base following its loss at the May election.
Lyle Shelton is National Director of Family First. Sign up for updates here.