The Pro-Life Campaign has urged supporters not to vote for Fianna Fáil in the next general election to protest against the party’s refusal to back amendments to limit the scope of abortion legislation.
In a hard-hitting statement as the Oireachtas Health Committee debated the proposed legislation, a spokesperson for the PLC pointed out that one in three people voted ‘No’ in the referendum. “Fianna Fáil expect us to vote for them and look for nothing in return. That cannot happen.
“Aside from one or two notable exceptions, the Pro-Life Campaign will encourage its supporters not to vote for Fianna Fáil in the next election.
“For as long as our votes are taken for granted, we will resolutely hold to this position,” the spokesperson insisted.
The PLC has criticised Fianna Fáil’s refusal to back an amendment to give doctors the right to refuse to facilitate abortions. The organisation pointed out that “from January, any doctor who refuses to oversee an abortion taking place will be breaking the law and is likely to have their licence to practice medicine revoked.
“As the main opposition party, Fianna Fáil could easily have pressured the Government to concede to proper freedom of conscience protections for doctors and other reasonable amendments that would have saved some lives. But they decided to placate their friends in the media rather than respect their voters.
“Any party that isn’t even prepared to back moderate amendments to such an extreme and barbaric abortion bill doesn’t deserve a single pro-life vote in the next general election,” the statement added.
Meanwhile, hundreds of doctors who signed a petition for the country’s biggest General Practitioner group to hold an emergency meeting on abortion legislation have been left high and dry after the meeting was “pushed” into December, after the Dáil debates the plan.
It’s “beyond coincidence” the Irish College of General Practitioners set a meeting date in December a month after Oireachtas debate on abortion legislation begins, Dr Andrew O’Regan told The Irish Catholic. It’s “beyond coincidence” that the meeting has been delayed, he said. “They’ve been asked repeatedly since the referendum to hold the EGM. They’ve had so many opportunities to do it. It’s a huge failure on the board’s part to represent their members.”
At least 500 registered members signed the petition expressing concern about the proposed GP-lead abortion regime, he said.
Dr O’Regan added that the Minister for Health has not suitably engaged GPs on the issue, describing it as “disrespectful”.