Australia House Expected to Approve Bill to Legalize RU 486 Abortion Drug
by Steven Ertelt
February 10, 2006
Canberra, Australia (LifeNews.com) — With the Australia Senate signing off on legislation leading to the legalization of the dangerous abortion drug RU 486, observers expect the Australia House to support the measure as well when it votes next week.
Though the vote may be closer, observers say the House will likely also vote to transfer authority for legalizing the drug from pro-life Health Minister Tony Abbott to the Therapeutic Goods Administration.
According to the Weekend Australian newspaper, two-thirds of House MPs are expected to favor the pro-abortion measure.
Abbott told the newspaper he thought the measure would receive approval, but he still pressed MPs to reconsider.
"I would counsel my House of Representative colleagues to think long and hard before they follow the example of the Senate," he told the newspaper.
Prime Minister John Howard’s will likely oppose the bill and he said he did not think the Senate vote represented a vote of no confidence in Abbott, who has said the vote smacked of anti-Catholic bias against him and his pro-life position.
"I do not agree with my good friend Tony Abbott that the Senate vote was a vote of no confidence in him or government ministers," the Prime Minister said.
Pro-life groups have worked overtime to stop the bill in the parliament and put out a call for pro-life Australians to contact their lawmakers in advance of the vote that could take place as early as Monday.
The abortion drug has killed eight women worldwide and injured more than 850 women in the United States alone.
"Many Senators acknowledged the thousands of letters they received against the Bill but sadly the majority chose to disregard this outpouring of community concern over the deadly abortion drug," Emily O’Connor of Australia Right to Life, told LifeNews.com.
O’Connor’s group is calling on pro-life Australians to urge friends, family and church members to contact MPs in the House and urge a no vote on the bill.
The Senate supported the measure 45-28.
Nationals senator Ron Boswell warned MPs who voted for the bill that Australians will hold them accountable in the next elections and pro-life senator Barnaby Joyce said those backing the bill would be to blame when a woman dies from using it.
About 80,000 abortions occur annually in Australia.
TAKE ACTION: If you live in Australia, contact the House at 02 6277 7111 and ask for your elected official. Urge strong opposition to the RU 486 bill.