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Abortion Bill Attacking Sick Babies Defeated

by | Mar 5, 2015

Editor’s note. This comes from the LifeZine newsletter produced by the Irish pro-life organization Family & Life. The Dáil is the lower house of the Republic of Ireland legislature. TD is a member of the Dáil. Fianna Fáil is a political party.

Clare Daly, member of the Irish Parliament

Clare Daly, member of the Irish Parliament

An abortion bill that would have allowed the abortion of babies diagnosed with serious illnesses has been defeated in the Dáil. The bill, sponsored by Independent Socialist TD Clare Daly was voted down by 104 votes to 20. Those supporting the bill included three Fianna Fáil TDs and one Labour TD, Anne Ferris, who voted against the government in defiance of her party whip.

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar said he could not support the legislation proposal because the bill is “unconstitutional” and a referendum would be required to amend the Constitution so that the legislation as outlined by Deputy Daly could be introduced.

However, he said he believed it was a matter “we should deal with in the next Dáil” and the Constitutional Convention could have a role in this. He told the Dáil that the Government has “no electoral mandate to hold a referendum on abortion and no consensus on what form any amendment should take”.

Deputy Daly dismissed the Government’s position that the bill is unconstitutional. She said an attorney general can be wrong and that the bill should be tested in the courts.

The three Fianna Fáil TDs who voted for the abortion bill were Niall Collins (Limerick), Billy Kelleher (Cork North Central), and Robert Troy (Longford Westmeath).

Categories: International