Monday 20 August 2018

Tóibín to 'strongly fight' SF backing of 12 weeks

Peadar Tóibín is one of just two SF TDs who opposed repeal
Peadar Tóibín is one of just two SF TDs who opposed repeal
Cormac McQuinn

Cormac McQuinn

Sinn Féin TD Peadar Tóibín says he will "strongly campaign" against his party changing its policy on abortion to support allowing unrestricted terminations up to 12 weeks.

Mr Tóibín is one of just two Sinn Féin TDs who opposed repealing the Eighth Amendment, and has been at odds with party leader Mary Lou McDonald on the issue.

Sinn Féin policy supports allowing abortions in cases of rape, incest, fatal foetal abnormality and where the life or health of a mother is at risk. The party is to hold a special ard fheis next week where it will decide if it will support the Government's proposed new legislation.

Mr Tóibín said he remains opposed to what he described as "abortion on demand".

Whip

Mr Tóibín risks losing the party whip if Sinn Féin decides to support the 12 weeks proposal and he votes against party policy in the Dáil.

He said he would be reserving his position on how he will vote until after the ard fheis and the Government's full legislation is published.

His party colleague Carol Nolan, the only other Sinn Féin TD to oppose repeal, has confirmed she will vote against the Government's proposed legislation.

Meanwhile, anti-abortion Independent senator Rónán Mullen has claimed there is "indecent haste" to get the abortion law over the line.

But he confirmed he will take part in health committee meetings during the summer if Seanad members are included in the process.

Irish Independent

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