This week, an Taoiseach, Enda Kenny admitted that his TDs were “castigated” in their constituencies on the abortion bill. However, he said that the same politicians voted for abortion rather than be kicked out of the Fine Gael party.
Speaking to Morning Ireland on Tuesday, September 17th, the Fine Gael leader claimed that TDs who had voted against the party had ‘self-expelled’ themselves, and would not be selected as candidates in future elections.
Asked by the presenter, Cathal McCoille, if there was a way back Kenny said: “[T]those rules are very clear, and I would say this to you in the recent legislation there were sizeable numbers of FG parliamentary members who said to me I’m going to vote for this, Im being castigated in my constituency for supporting this but I’m going to do it because I signed on for Fine Gael and I don’t want to see people who decide for their own reasons to vote against walking back in here in the short time and that won’t happen.
He then added: “Well look I don’t even know whether if any of those would want to renew their membership of Fine Gael as a political party, they certainly can’t be members of the parliamentary party. We are quite a distance from the general election, I don’t know whether they want to stand for election as a member of party or not, they are now free spirits and if they wish to continue in that line that’s their business.”
Commenting, Niamh Uí Bhriain of the Life Institute said that it was clear that many Fine Gale TDs had cast the wishes of the voters, and their own consciences, aside, in order to do the line for Enda Kenny.
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“Politicians who behave in this way will lose the respect of the electorate, but it is interesting to see an Taoiseach admit just how unpopular his abortion legislation was.”
She urged the pro-life movement to remain engaged and involved so that the legislation could be overturned as soon as possible.