The Irish people may not have realized just how radically pro-abortion their leaders’ plans were when they voted to repeal their pro-life Eighth Amendment in May.
Discriminatory sex-selection abortions are illegal in the UK, but they may not be in Ireland soon.
On Wednesday, the Oireachtas Health Committee rejected an amendment that would have prohibited sex-selection abortions in Ireland, Breaking News Ireland reports.
Health Minister Simon Harris, who has been pushing the pro-abortion legislation, claimed the anti-discrimination amendment is “unnecessary.”
Government leaders are pushing a radical pro-abortion bill that would legalize abortion for any reason up to 12 weeks of pregnancy and up to six months in a wide variety of circumstances in Ireland. It would force taxpayers to pay for abortions and force Catholic hospitals to provide them. The bill also strictly limits conscience protections for medical professionals.
Right now, the Health Committee is debating a series of amendments to the bill. One that it voted down Wednesday would have prohibited discriminatory abortions based on the unborn baby’s sex, race or disability.
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According to the report:
Health Minister Simon Harris stressed that the legislation to allow for abortion services in this country would never allow a woman to seek a termination on disability or other grounds mentioned in the amendment.
He said the amendment was “unnecessary” and suggested it was “an attempt to have a gotcha moment”.
But nowhere in his bill are these discriminatory abortions prohibited. And even if they are prohibited indirectly, as Harris claims, it would be better to state those prohibitions openly to remove any doubt.
A total of 10 TDs had asked that an amendment to specifically reference that a termination of the pregnancy could not be sought because of the sex or race of the foetus concerned or because of any condition or disability affecting the foetus concerned.
Peadar Toibín admitted the amendment would be “very hard to implement” but would “send a wonderful message” that the State are protecting the rights of those with a condition or disability.
Responding, Mr Harris said that when framing legislation everything that is lawful is inserted into a Bill meaning anything else is unlawful.
He suggested that the amendment was an attempt to make the section of the Bill “inoperable”.
Fine Gael TD Kate O’Connell said the amendment was “deliberately designed to inflame the situation” adding that it was “disrespectful” to suggest that people with down syndrome “are only here because of the eighth amendment”.
Tóibín, who was suspended by his party last week for voting pro-life, said the legislation is much more extreme than what voters wanted when they chose to repeal the pro-life Eighth Amendment in May.
“It is also important to note that the 34 per cent of the population that voted to retain the Eighth Amendment plus the 20 per cent of Yes voters who don’t agree with this bill should have a voice in the Oireachtas,” he said last week. “It is reasonable that TDs should give voice to the opposing views on Simon Harris’s abortion bill in roughly the proportion that exists in society. There is no better way to push voters to the extreme than to deny them a legitimate democratic voice.”
On Wednesday, the committee also discussed an amendment to require the dignified disposal of human fetal remains. Harris opposed it, too, claiming the proposal was “grossly offensive,” according to the report.