Pro-life political party Aontú’s Mid Ulster candidate for the upcoming election in Northern Ireland has received a warm reception on the doorstep for her pro-life views.
Alixandra Halliday, who represented Northern Ireland at the 2011 Miss Earth beauty pageant in Thailand, was selected as a candidate for the political party Aontú. Speaking to Sunday Life, the now former model and mother-of-three made her pro-life convictions clear.
As part of her pro-life stance, she is strongly in favour of giving mothers “support and as much medical care as possible”. She said that abortion was one of the issues that brought her into politics.
“It’s so close to a lot of people’s hearts, and it’s a big one because of how it was brought in via Westminster, and because it’s quite recent, this is people’s first real opportunity to vote since it happened”.
“We stand for life and for protecting women as well. We believe life begins at conception and would see it as being here for life — and that runs through everything from education to housing to the cost of living”.
Ms Halliday has also found that she has received a warm reception for her pro-life views saying: “It’s quite nice actually. It gives you a wee spur to keep going whenever your message resonates with people”.
“The main issue people want to discuss is the fact abortion is now available in Northern Ireland. A lot of people are not happy about that”.
On Aontú’s website, Ms Halliday says: “I’m also a pro-life campaigner, and was disgusted to see that MLAs from Sinn Féin and the SDLP recently voted in support of abortion up to birth for babies with Downs Syndrome in the Assembly. I believe that every human being has value, and should be afforded human rights”.
Abortion in Northern Ireland
Since the imposition of a new extreme abortion regime in 2020, abortion has been available on demand in Northern Ireland throughout the first 12 weeks of gestation. This abortion provision also allows abortion on the basis of the sex of the child.
Polling from 2020 showed that the majority of voters only want abortion to be available in cases where the mother’s life is at risk, a position in line with the law before the Westminster Parliament imposed a change on Northern Ireland.
Northern Ireland was the last region of the British Isles to have widespread abortion introduced into the country. It is estimated that 100,000 people are alive in Northern Ireland today who would not have been if abortion were available as it was in the rest of the U.K. This figure was confirmed by the Advertising Standards Authority in 2017.
Right To Life UK spokesperson, Catherine Robinson, said: “It is encouraging that there are political parties willing to put forward strongly pro-life candidates. Abortion remains a highly contentious issue and a majority of voters do not support abortion being available on demand”.
“As Ms Halliday has found from meeting people on their doorsteps, many people are strongly pro-life and resent the Westminster imposition of abortion on Northern Ireland”.