Labour MP Louisa Wall became emotional and had to pause during her speech to Parliament tonight on the euthanasia bill as she spoke of a family member's recent terminal illness.
MPs have tonight started putting forward amendments to the End of Life Choice Bill which passed its second reading 70 votes to 50 last month, with much of that support conditional on major changes being secured.
Act Party leader David Seymour, who promoted the bill, wants to tighten the legislation to cover only those with a terminal illness.
Ms Wall told the House she thinks that clarification has made it really helpful, "not only for us as a parliament but also for New Zealanders".
Ms Wall became emotional and had to pause to regain her composure as she said, "And can I say, having recently been through an experience of a family member who had a terminal illness, providing choice and providing an opportunity for people who are living with a terminal illness to actually take back some control of their lives when they have none I think is incredibly empowering."
"And so I want to acknowledge that the purpose this bill is now crystal clear. It will only apply to people with a terminal illness," she said.
New Zealand First's support for the bill depends on there being a public referendum, a move Mr Seymour supports, RNZ reported.
Mr Seymour's amendment for the bill to cover only those with a terminal illness is designed to appease the Greens and secure their vote, RNZ said.
National MP Maggie Barry who opposes the bill has at least 120 amendments to put forward.
The debate will resume on August 14.