TANAISTE Eamon Gilmore has promised Labour backbenchers that the controversial abortion legislation will be passed before the Dail summer break – despite the current coalition row.
Fine Gael and Labour are currently locked in a stalemate over Health Minister Dr James Reilly’s proposal to have six consultants involved in an approving an abortion where there is a threat of suicide.
But at the Labour parliamentary party meeting today (Wednesday), Mr Gilmore told backbenchers that the legislation would still be passed as scheduled before the end of the current Dail session in July. There had been fears that it would get pushed back until the autumn - which would give pro-life groups opposed to the legislation more time to put pressure on Fine Gael backbenchers.
And backbenchers were also told that he is working intensively on the issue with the two Labour Junior Ministers in Dr Reilly’s department - Alex White and Kathleen Lynch.
A Labour source said there was still a big gap between the party and Fine Gael on the draft abortion legislation.