‘There is an openness’ – Fianna Fáil in flux on abortion
Support for repeal is 50/50 but the real split is over the proposed 12-week window
Jan 27, 2018
Moral conservatism has always seemed intrinsic to Fianna Fáíl. It’s not just 1983 and the Eighth Amendment. It’s all the other referendums since then. It’s the way Micheál Martin was rebuffed, only four years ago, by his own parliamentarians during the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Bill. It was the 70 per cent who voted to retain the Eighth Amendment in a debate on the margins of its ardfheis last autumn.
Though a liberal wing has emerged among its TDs and senators in recent years, the image has persisted for 35 years. That partly explains the volcanic reaction among colleagues to Martin’s volte-face on the Eighth Amendment last week.