A bill to allow assisted dying in New Zealand has passed its first reading by a significant margin of 76 votes to 44.

Many MPs restricted their support to the first reading, saying future support would depend on public submissions and amendments made during the select committee process.

The NZ First MPs in particular want to include a binding referendum of the public before any law changes would come into effect. Act leader David Seymour, the bill’s sponsor, has agreed to that but it would have to get majority support in Parliament as well.

The bill will be considered by the Justice Select Committee and Seymour sought an extended nine month period for that consideration, rather than the usual six months.

The ballot papers on which MPs votes were recorded for the End of Life Choice Bill. AYES are those who voted in favour, the NOES against. Photo / Supplied

The ballot papers on which MPs votes were recorded for the End of Life Choice Bill. AYES are those who voted in favour, the NOES against. Photo / Supplied

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