Besides helping elect Barack Obama as the first black president of the United States, voters in Washington state also voted yesterday to make their state the second in the country to allow physician-assisted suicide.
Under the resolution, terminally ill people can get lethal prescriptions to hasten their deaths. Late Tuesday night, the "death with dignity" measure was leading with 58 per cent of the vote to 42 per cent. Patients would have to ask their doctors for a prescription giving them enough medication to kill themselves.
Neighbouring Oregon has had a similar measure for more than a decade.
"We feel like the voters of Washington have agreed to give terminally ill and their families the dignity that they've asked for," said Anne Martens, a spokeswoman for the Yes campaign.
Opponent Chris Carlson said, "It appears that the voters of the state of Washington have, unfortunately, started down a path that I believe with historical hindsight they'll come to regret."
Washington was one of the states carried by Obama in the presidential election.