Australia RU 486 Drug Debate Continues, MP Admits Doing Abortions

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Feb 14, 2006   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Australia RU 486 Drug Debate Continues, MP Admits Doing Abortions Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
February 14, 2006

Canberra, Australia ( — Whatever decision the Australian parliament finally makes on whether to legalize the dangerous abortion drug RU 486 the debate over it will be marked by the kind of candor not normally seen in abortion debates in the United States. A final vote is expected tomorrow.

Leading up to the vote, members of parliament have admitted to having an abortion and being in a relationship with a woman who had an abortion.

In the latest revelation, Liberal MP Andrew Laming admitted he performed up to 10 abortions every day while working at an abortion business in London. He says he regrets his involvement.

During the debate Laming described the "awful" experience of performing abortions for six months at a hospital in London. He said he performed abortions in the morning and counseled women about infertility issues in the afternoon.

According to the Courier Mail newspaper, Laming said debating the topic of RU 486 was easily compared to his job of performing abortions.

"It will not be as hard for me as it was as a clinician doing 10 terminations of pregnancy in the morning surgically and then counseling women in the afternoon about infertility, and the awful period that I had in between the two sessions trying to resolve and understand precisely what I was doing in my job," he said.

Despite his struggle with doing abortions, he still plans to support the bill that will pave the way for allowing the abortion drug.

The Australia Senate has already approved the bill to strip pro-life Health Minister Tony Abbott of his power to prohibit the abortion drug from being used.

The House is expected to approve the measure tomorrow and give the authority to the Therapeutic Goods Administration, though a last minute compromise could give the parliament veto power over the TGA’s decision.

Laming is leading the compromise effort and said the TGA may have medical expertise but no authority to consider the moral aspect of the decision.

"We’ll need another level of scrutiny post-science," he said.