Ireland – Yes campaign’s outreach to middle ground delivered the landslide

Yes campaign’s outreach to middle ground delivered the landslide
Undecideds swung in huge numbers to Yes, as politicians struggled to keep up with pace of change

May 27, 2018
Pat Leahy

Politicians and politics are playing catch-up, following Friday’s vote. It happened before, with contraception, divorce and homosexuality. Now it has happened with abortion.

It’s not so much that the vote will change our society, but rather that it signals that society has already changed. It has conceded to women power over their own lives that had been previously withheld by the State.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/abortion-referendum/yes-campaign-s-outreach-to-middle-ground-delivered-the-landslide-1.3510338

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How the Yes and No sides won and lost the abortion referendum

How the Yes and No sides won and lost the abortion referendum

Harry McGee: Smiling Savita portraits proclaiming a new reality for Ireland
May 26, 2018

Harry McGee Political Correspondent

In the last few days of the referendum campaign on the Eight Amendment dozens of small posters appeared around Dublin.

The image was of Savita Halappanavar, instantly recognisable from her thick dark hair, wide smile, smiling eyes, and the Bindi dot on the forehead. The message contained one word: Yes. They were striking in their simplicity and directness.

The Savita case (read Kitty Holland’s report from 2012 here) was never too far away from people’s minds during the eight weeks that this extraordinary referendum campaign seeped into Irish public consciousness on doorsteps, in the streets, in the media, or on the airwaves… right up to polling day.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/abortion-referendum/how-the-yes-and-no-sides-won-and-lost-the-abortion-referendum-1.3509924

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Ireland – 8th Amendment demands punishment for women

Fintan O’Toole: 8th Amendment demands punishment for women
Constitutional ban means Ireland too extreme even for mainstream social conservatives

April 30, 2018
Fintan O'Toole

I’m not sure people who want to defend the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution know how extreme their position is. Extreme, that is to say, not by the standards of those of us who always opposed it and would like it to be repealed, but even by the standards of mainstream social conservatism.

The Eighth is, in one crucial respect, on the lunatic fringe of anti-abortion activism. This is because, as has been made clear in recent years, it does not merely outlaw abortion in all but a very small range of circumstances. It does something else, something that most sensible conservatives regard as repugnant – it demands severe punishment for women who have abortions. There is no way around this: while the Eighth is in place, Ireland is committed to treating abortion, not just as a moral wrong, but as a crime more serious than, for example, child rape.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/fintan-o-toole-8th-amendment-demands-punishment-for-women-1.3479390

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Ireland – People before Profit wants abortion as early and as late as needed

People before Profit wants abortion as early and as late as needed
Party will support Government’s proposition for abortion within first trimester

April 27, 2018
Sarah Bardon

Any legislation that replaces the Eighth Amendment should not be reconsidered for a Dáil term, People before Profit has said.

The party launched its campaign to remove Article 40.3.3 of the Constitution in the forthcoming referendum on May 25th.

Every member of the party is canvassing for a Yes vote and its message is one of trusting women and giving them the choice, it said.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/people-before-profit-wants-abortion-as-early-and-as-late-as-needed-1.3476984

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Irish abortion vote tests Facebook and campaign data

Irish abortion vote tests Facebook and campaign data

Facebook is rolling out transparency measures during the Irish campaign to see what happens when all users can see political advertising.

By Sarah Wheaton and Mark Scott
4/24/18

DUBLIN — Ireland’s soul-searching debate over whether to change its constitution and allow women to terminate their pregnancies coincides with a ballooning transatlantic scandal surrounding Facebook and the use of personal data in political advertising.

Irish voters go to the polls May 25 to decide whether to repeal the country’s abortion ban. With the campaign heating up, lawmakers hauled Facebook executives before parliament to grill them about how to prevent people’s personal information from being used to manipulate them online.

Continued: https://www.politico.eu/article/ireland-abortion-referendum-may-25-facebook-advertising-save-the-8th-repeal-the-8th/

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Striking the right tone is crucial in Eighth debate

Striking the right tone is crucial in Eighth debate
Now the Irish people know what they're being asked, campaigners should ease up on the melodrama, writes Eilis O'Hanlon

Eilis O'Hanlon
March 11 2018

Last week, the Taoiseach ticked a few more items off his To Do list. Thursday's special Cabinet meeting was finally able to rubber-stamp the wording for the upcoming referendum on the Eighth Amendment, following the Supreme Court's ruling in a separate case that unborn children do not have rights in the Constitution beyond the right to life.

The main policy paper, outlining the key points that will be included in subsequent legislation, was also approved. As a result, Minister for Health Simon Harris was free to bring the 36th Amendment of the Constitution Bill 2018 to the Dail on Friday for a Second Stage reading and debate.

Continued: https://www.independent.ie/opinion/comment/striking-the-right-tone-is-crucial-in-eighth-debate-36691949.html

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Ireland: HSE will ‘remain neutral’ on abortion debate, says health chief

HSE will ‘remain neutral’ on abortion debate, says health chief
Committee hears of HSE staff member using official paper to correspond on issue

Feb 7, 2018
Martin Wall

The HSE will take no position in the forthcoming referendum on abortion and will remain neutral, its director general has said.

Tony O’Brien told the Oireachtas health committee that a member of staff who used official notepaper to send correspondence to Oireachtas members urging opposition to repeal of the Eighth Amendment had been met with and taken through the appropriate procedures.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/health/hse-will-remain-neutral-on-abortion-debate-says-health-chief-1.3383233

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Ireland: Harris raises Kerry babies and Lovett cases in abortion debate

Harris raises Kerry babies and Lovett cases in abortion debate
Minister for Health: 3,265 women from every county had travelled abroad for abortions last year

Wed, Jan 17, 2018
Marie O'Halloran

Abortion is a reality for women living in Ireland and is an issue that is not going to go away, Minister for Health Simon Harris has said.

“Ultimately, there is always a deeply personal, private story behind each individual case which I believe is a matter for a woman and her doctor. I believe the Irish people trust women and they trust doctors to make these difficult decisions.”

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/oireachtas/harris-raises-kerry-babies-and-lovett-cases-in-abortion-debate-1.3358750

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Fintan O’Toole: Ireland’s abortion regime is too cruel even for Trump

Fintan O'Toole: Ireland's abortion regime is too cruel even for Trump
Eighth Amendment law about locking up women and doctors really is step too far

Dec 19, 2017
Fintan O'Toole

Is there no line Donald Trump would not cross? Actually, there is one. It’s not incinerating an entire country, as he threatened to do to North Korea, or incinerating the entire planet by undermining the Paris accord on climate change. It’s not smearing an entire nation, as he did by calling Mexicans rapists. It’s not cosying up to neo-Nazis by claiming that there are some “very fine people” among them. It’s not even republishing to his 40 million Twitter followers anti-Islamic propaganda videos from a British neo-Nazi group. Trump has crossed all of these lines and so many more and never felt that he had gone too far and ought to retreat.

Continued at source: https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/fintan-o-toole-ireland-s-abortion-regime-is-too-cruel-even-for-trump-1.3331398

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Ireland: Abortion and the eighth amendment: putting it up to the politicians

Abortion and the eighth amendment: putting it up to the politicians
The abortion committee has voted in favour of repealing the eighth amendment — now it’s up to the Dail

Justine McCarthy
December 17 2017

After 13 weeks, 16 meetings, 47 witnesses and sporadic outbreaks of umbrage, a stunned silence suddenly descended on committee room three in the basement of Leinster House on Wednesday evening. The Oireachtas committee on the eighth amendment had just voted to recommend the repeal of the constitution's most divisive clause, the 34-year ban on abortion.

“Should we clap or what?” asked Brid Smith, a Solidarity-People Before Profit TD who has told how she took a boat to England in 1985 to have a pregnancy terminated. Laughter rippled through the public gallery and around the horseshoe-shaped committee desk. It stopped where Rónán Mullen, an independent senator, and the TDs Mattie McGrath, an independent, and Peter Fitzpatrick of Fine Gael sat together, stony-faced.

Continued at source: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/ireland/abortion-and-the-eighth-amendment-putting-it-up-to-the-politicians-fjz8f0pzm

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