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PR: TDs must now prove to voters that they didn't give false assurances in abortion referendum

The Life Institute has said that enacting changes to further liberalise Ireland's abortion law would be a '"grotesque betrayal of promises made to voters" and that Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael TDs now "need to prove to voters that they didn't give false assurances in the abortion referendum." 

The pro-life group also said that any changes to the abortion legislation should only be focused on offering women real choices and endeavouring to bring down the "truly shocking" abortion rates now being recorded in Ireland. 

"The outcome of the abortion review was always preordained because only people supportive of abortion were appointed to the process by the government, but the truth is that the real onus is now on TDs - especially those in Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael who made promises during the referendum regarding the 3-day waiting period and other issues," said spokeswoman Megan Ní Scealláin. 

"We'll be making sure over the coming months that voters know that TDs like Simon Coveney, Micheál Martin, and Leo Varadkar - who pitched the abortion legislation to voters as having safeguards -  should be held to that promise," she said. 

"The truth is that the government felt that voters needed reassurances in the referendum, so Simon Coveney and others were sent out to talk up what they described as safeguards," Ms Ní Scealláin said. "It would be a grotesque betrayal of that promise to accede to the extreme demands of abortion campaigners and drive up the number of abortions yet again." 

Life Institute has contended in its submission to the review process that data from the HSE shows an average of more than 1,000 women a year changed their mind in the 3-day wait period - and that scrapping that time to reflect would therefore lead to a significant increase in the number of abortions.  

The Life Institute spokeswoman said that remarks made today by an Taoiseach Leo Varadkar signified a 'reluctance' to change the abortion legislation because of referendum promises. 

"There is no doubt that TDs across the country are already hearing from voters on this issue - and that they understand that, despite the noise being generated by abortion campaigners, this would be an unpopular measure," she said, pointing to an Irish Times/Ipsos poll last year that showed jus 25% of people wanted easier access to abortion.

"At the end of the day, the Abortion Review did exactly what it was set up to do, because it was always intended to ignore the horrific outcomes of the law," the Life Institute spokeswoman said. 

"Thus the huge surge in abortion numbers - as high as 8,500 last year according to Stephen Donnelly; the catastrophic mistakes made in aborting babies after a misdiagnosis; the failure to offer women life-affirming choices; the reality that late-term abortions are being carried out; those outcomes are all being ignored," she said. 

"But voters know that the real power lies with the TDs, and they will hold their politicians to account, "the pro-life spokeswoman added. 

"TDs are cognisant that 33% of voters voted No to repeal, and that 75% of voters indicated they would not support the changes now being proposed to make the law even more liberal, and increasing the already shockingly-high number of abortions." 


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