Saturday 21 April 2018

Is Fianna Fail the last resort for social conservatives?

They might not like it, but Micheal Martin's party may offer the only welcome for 'traditional voters', writes Eoin O'Malley

Micheál Martin. Photo: Damien Eagers
Micheál Martin. Photo: Damien Eagers

Eoin O'Malley

We are just one week nearer to the referendum to repeal the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution. But this week it got a whole lot closer. The Dail passed the Bill last Wednesday, and it is likely to have a similarly easy passage through the Seanad.

Thirty-two TDs voted against the Bill, arguing we shouldn't have the referendum. This doesn't really matter now that the referendum is certain to happen. What will be interesting is how the different parties campaign on the issue, and what it might mean after the referendum, were it to be passed by the people.

Sinn Fein is formally in favour of its repeal, though there are some recalcitrant TDs, and no doubt many more unhappy members. It will hold an Ard Fheis in June with the expectation that it is going to shift the party's policy to a more liberal position on abortion provision.

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