Fionnan Sheahan: Fine Gael would only create a rod for their own back with free vote
THE failure of Fine Gael and Fianna Fail to internally debate their position – either way – on abortion for a decade has come back to bite the parties. Burying their heads in the sand means the two traditionally largest parties are now caught out when the issue has come to a head.
The question of whether there will be an open vote on forthcoming abortion legislation is most pertinent to them – more so to Fine Gael as a government party. Fianna Fail has the get-out clause of being in opposition.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore have firmly and repeatedly ruled out any open vote on the issue. "All members of the Government parties, as is normal, will be expected to support that," Mr Gilmore reiterated yesterday.