By Jonathon Van Maren
Fantastic news from UK Right to Life on the latest attempt to force legal abortion on Northern Ireland earlier today:
A radical abortion bill brought forward by Diana Johnson MP has failed to pass through the Commons at its Second Reading today after opposition was raised by a number of MPs led by Christopher Chope MP.
This means that the Bill is now very unlikely to progress any further in this current session.
The Bill was first brought introduced as a Ten Minute Rule Motion on the 23rd October. The highly controversial motion sought to impose abortion on Northern Ireland and to remove many of the current legal safeguards around abortion provision in England and Wales.
The Prime Minister, Theresa May, outlined her concerns about the Bill in a letter to a constituent including the lack of safeguards and legal framework, and the threat it posed to devolution in Northern Ireland.
A spokesperson for Right To Life, Clare McCarthy said:
“It is good news today that this radical abortion bill has failed to pass through the Commons. This is often the case with Ten Minute Rule Motions however the far-reaching and extreme changes proposed in the Bill were very worrying.
The Bill sought to bring about one of the world’s most extreme abortion laws, not only in England and Wales but also in Northern Ireland, where unborn babies are currently strongly protected under the law. Recent polling conducted in Northern Ireland last month showed that 66% of women there and 70% of 18 – 34’s said that Westminster should not impose abortion laws on them.
Not only was Diana Johnson’s abortion Bill out of step with the people of Northern Ireland, it was also wildly out of line with public opinion on abortion across the rest of the UK. Polling shows that the British public actually supports more legal safeguards with 70% of women polled indicating that the current 24-week gestational limit for abortion should be reduced.
Though it is good news today, pro-life people should not rest easy on their laurels. We know abortion activists will be doing everything in their power to progress their agenda in Parliament over the coming months. It is vital that constituents continue to lobby their MPs on the disastrous impact these proposals would have for women and babies in the womb right across the United Kingdom.”
As I noted yesterday, abortion activists and celebrities have been pushing hard to get legislation that will simply force abortion on Northern Ireland, hoping to take advantage of the momentum from their victory in the Republic of Ireland earlier this year and bring abortion to all of Ireland in one fell swoop. So far, pro-lifers are fighting back on multiple fronts while the Democratic Unionist Party has pledged to stand their ground and keep abortion out. Bernadette Smyth of Precious Life told me recently that they were hanging on to Northern Ireland’s pro-life laws “by a thread,” and that it would be a nonstop, knock-down, drag-out fight. She and other defenders of pre-born human rights are celebrating today.
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