Saturday 18 November 2017

Taoiseach: Amendments will 'clarify' abortion bill

Michael Brennan Deputy Political Editor

TAOISEACH Enda Kenny has said that amendments will be made to "clarify" the abortion bill next week.

But with Fine Gael Junior Minister Lucinda Creighton on the brink of voting against it, Mr Kenny said it was about the women of Ireland and their unborn children "and not any one individual".

As pro-life groups and pro-abortion groups prepare to hold counter-demonstrations in Dublin tomorrow, Mr Kenny warned the law was not about one particular individual, but about the women of Ireland and the lives of their unborn children.

He said that Health Minister Dr James Reilly and Junior Minister for Primary Care Alex White were discussing a number of amendments to give clarification to the bill.

"They will put forward a number of matters that clarify to everybody what is involved here," he said.

"The two ministers may have entered a number of amendments dealing with clarifications to the bill and they will propose to move on with those and obviously there will be a series of votes on amendments next week," Mr Kenny added.

Peter Mathews, Terence Flanagan, Brian Walsh and Billy Timmins were automatically expelled from the Fine Gael parliamentary party and face being kicked off Oireachtas committees after they voted against the Government in the first series of ballots on the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Bill 2013

However, Mr Kenny gave no signal that any radical changes to the contents of the bill would be made in the amendments.

The abortion bill has passed second stage and committee stage in the Dail this week. A further vote on report stage -which will include any amendments - is due to be held at 10pm next Wednesday. As many as seven more Fine Gael TDs are said to be toying with rebellion over the bill.

Mr Kenny was speaking at the meeting of the North-South Ministerial Council in Dublin Castle, which was attended by the North's First Minister Peter Robinson and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinnes

Online Editors

Promoted Links

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Promoted Links

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News