Why Ireland faces fifth divisive referendum on abortion in 35 years

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Why Ireland faces fifth divisive referendum on abortion in 35 years

Larry Donnelly
April 22, 2018

Back in 1983, two thirds of the Irish people voted to insert the following language into their constitution in a referendum: “The State acknowledges the right to life of the unborn and, with due regard to the equal right to life of the mother, guarantees in its laws to respect, and, as far as practicable, by its laws to defend and vindicate that right.”

What became the 8th Amendment was largely driven by the Catholic Church and conservative forces, who were cognisant of a liberal abortion regime in the United Kingdom and the recognition of a constitutional right to abortion in the United States, and wanted to prevent something similar here in Ireland.

Continued: https://www.irishcentral.com/opinion/others/ireland-fifth-referendum-abortion-35-years

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Can Facebook beat back the fake news in Ireland’s upcoming vote on abortion?

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Can Facebook beat back the fake news in Ireland’s upcoming vote on abortion?
By Laura Hazard Owen
April 20, 2018

The growing stream of reporting on and data about fake news, misinformation, partisan content, and news literacy is hard to keep up with. This weekly roundup offers the highlights of what you might have missed.

Facebook ad transparency ahead of Ireland’s abortion referendum. On May 25, Irish citizens will vote on whether to end the country’s abortion ban. In advance of the referendum, CNN’s Ivana Kottasová reports, Facebook is rolling out a new tool that will “give users more information about political advertisements and sponsored posts in their News Feeds.” It’s already been tested in Canada and will roll out globally before the U.S. midterms.

Continued: http://www.niemanlab.org/2018/04/can-facebook-beat-back-the-fake-news-in-irelands-upcoming-vote-on-abortion/

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‘Irish Times’ poll: Clear shift in attitude to abortion since 2013

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‘Irish Times’ poll: Clear shift in attitude to abortion since 2013
Survey suggests majority will vote ‘Yes’ but making predictions is fraught with risk

April 19, 2018
Damian Loscher

Today’s Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI poll provides an early indication of public opinion and voting intentions in the forthcoming referendum on the Eighth Amendment.

Albeit early in the campaign, a significant majority of those declaring their intentions are in favour of repeal – 63 per cent Yes, compared with 37 per cent No when unlikely and undecided voters are excluded.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/abortion-referendum/irish-times-poll-clear-shift-in-attitude-to-abortion-since-2013-1.3467547

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‘Irish Times’ poll: Public favour repeal of Eighth despite slip in support

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‘Irish Times’ poll: Public favour repeal of Eighth despite slip in support
Strong backing for removing constitutional ban on abortion but fifth of voters undecided

April 19, 2018
Pat Leahy

The repeal side maintains a strong lead in the abortion referendum campaign with today’s Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI opinion poll suggesting there is a clear majority in favour of removing the constitutional ban on abortion.

Although support for repeal has slipped somewhat since the last poll in January, there is no growth in the support for retaining the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution, while a fifth of voters say they have yet to make up their minds.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/abortion-referendum/irish-times-poll-public-favour-repeal-of-eighth-despite-slip-in-support-1.3467503

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Ireland – Taoiseach to launch campaign for pro-repeal FG members

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Taoiseach to launch campaign for pro-repeal FG members
Leo Varadkar to hold an event calling for a ‘Yes’ vote in Eighth Amendment referendum

Tue, Apr 17, 2018
Sarah Bardon Political Reporter

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is to launch a campaign for Fine Gael members in favour of repealing the Eighth Amendment.

Mr Varadkar and a number of senior Ministers will hold an event this weekend outlining why they believe people should vote “Yes” in the forthcoming referendum on the Amendment.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/abortion-referendum/taoiseach-to-launch-campaign-for-pro-repeal-fg-members-1.3464898

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Why are Irish journalists again missing a movement?

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Una Mullally: Why are Irish journalists again missing a movement?
Media appears unable to interpret political movements formed outside traditional party structures

Mon, Apr 16, 2018
Una Mullally

We are at that moment in a referendum campaign where stories, takes, and points of view need to be generated as commentary. Some will be insightful, others less so. Some will be deliberately provocative, some will be more concentrated on facts. Some will fulfil the most tedious trope in journalism, where criticism will be levelled at a campaign by those who substitute expertise and experience for a “hunch”.

There are more than two opposing campaigns under way, of course, multiple campaigns – particularly on the pro-repeal side – emerging from grassroots activism and active citizenship. As the media narratives weave themselves in knots, what I find especially interesting is how this referendum campaign is frequently compared to the marriage equality referendum campaign. Generally, this comparison follows two narratives.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/una-mullally-why-are-irish-journalists-again-missing-a-movement-1.3462385

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Repeal campaigner accuses anti-abortion campaigner of ‘sustained attack’

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Repeal campaigner accuses anti-abortion campaigner of ‘sustained attack’
Janet O’Sullivan issues statement to the media in relation to Save the 8th spokesman

Fri, Apr 13, 2018
Colin Gleeson

A prominent campaigner for the repeal side in the upcoming abortion referendum has accused the spokesman of the Save the 8th campaign of mounting a “sustained attack” on her through social media.

In a statement on Friday, Janet O’Sullivan, who also goes by Janet Ní Shúilleabháin, said the dispute centred on remarks she made on Twitter following the death of former Fine Gael TD Peter Mathews.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/social-affairs/repeal-campaigner-accuses-anti-abortion-campaigner-of-sustained-attack-1.3461253

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Ireland – Most older women support abortion change, repeal campaigners claim

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Most older women support abortion change, repeal campaigners claim
Questions from public centre on future legislation, say repeal campaigners in Sligo

Sat, Apr 7, 2018
Marese McDonagh in Sligo

With just seven weeks to go before the abortion referendum, campaigners on the Repeal side in Sligo this week say they found a big appetite for information and a high level of engagement as they went door to door.

Local artist Paul Murray reckons they had canvassed up to 400 houses so far, getting an overwhelmingly positive response. “But in fairness it was getting close to kick off in the Liverpool/Manchester City game when we were out on Wednesday evening so they may have been saying anything to get rid of us,” he said.

continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/most-older-women-support-abortion-change-repeal-campaigners-claim-1.3453335

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Ireland – Long experience informs shifting views in abortion debate

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Long experience informs shifting views in abortion debate
Members of older generation share thoughts on Eighth Amendment

Apr 4, 2018
Sorcha Pollak

Sheila and Paddy Donohoe, now in their 70s, voted in favour of the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution in 1983. There was never any question in their minds regarding how they would vote. They were strict Catholics and active members of the Legion of Mary. They had grown up in a conservative country which taught them abortion was a sin in all circumstances.

“We were Catholics, we didn’t practise contraception, we did everything according to the book,” remembers Sheila. “At one stage I would have gone to Mass and Communion every day and we always brought the children to Mass. Whatever the church more or less said we believed. There was no reason for us to doubt or think otherwise. We weren’t encouraged to ask questions. Everything was totally hidden, everything was kept secret.”

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/social-affairs/long-experience-informs-shifting-views-in-abortion-debate-1.3449443

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Ireland’s abortion referendum signals progress for women – but north of the border under the DUP, things look grim

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Ireland's abortion referendum signals progress for women – but north of the border under the DUP, things look grim
Many thought that the referendum on equal marriage in the Republic of Ireland in 2015 would encourage politicians to campaign for a similar change in the law in Northern Ireland. But the last couple of years has shown us that progress can suddenly stall

Caitlin De Jode
Tuesday 30 January 2018

“Essentially what we’re asking people to do is to allow us to change the constitution so that we can make changes to our laws – liberalise them, relax them, make them more compassionate… We’re asking people, now, to trust women.”

For thousands of Irish people watching a blurry YouTube live stream, or desperately refreshing Twitter last night, hearing Taoiseach Leo Varadkar say those words proved to be a surprisingly emotional moment.

Continued: http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/ireland-abortion-referendum-women-feminism-protest-dup-nothern-ireland-border-grim-a8185886.html

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