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Pro-abortion extremist MP, who attempted to introduce abortion up to birth and legalise sex-selective abortion, appointed as Home Office Minister

Pro-abortion extremist MP Diana Johnson, who attempted to introduce abortion up to birth and legalise sex-selective abortion, has been appointed as a Government Minister.

Yesterday afternoon, the Home Office announced that Diana Johnson MP has been appointed a Minister of State in the Home Office.

Johnson, who was re-elected as the MP for Kingston upon Hull North and Cottingham last week, has led several failed attempts to introduce extreme abortion legislation.

Earlier this year, Johnson tabled an amendment (NC1) to the Criminal Justice Bill that would have removed offences that make it illegal for a woman to perform her own abortion at any point right through to birth. The explanatory note to New Clause 1 confirmed that it would apply at any gestation, meaning a woman could perform her own abortion, including on sex-selective grounds, throughout all nine months of pregnancy.

Stop Gendercide, a group that campaigns against the discriminatory practice of sex-selective abortion, warned that the proposed law change would have legalised sex-selective abortion and led to a large increase in sex-selective abortions taking place. 

In addition, over 750 medical professionals signed an open letter calling on MPs to oppose the change to the law. They warned, “If offences that make it illegal for a woman to perform her own abortion at any gestation were repealed, such abortions would, de facto, become possible up to birth for any reason including abortions for sex-selective purposes, as women could mistakenly or wilfully mislead abortion providers about their gestational age”.

If Johnson’s amendment had been successful, it would also likely have led to a significant increase in the number of women performing late-term abortions at home, endangering the lives of many more women. It would also have led to an increased number of viable babies’ lives being ended well beyond the 24-week abortion time limit and beyond the point at which they would be able to survive outside the womb.

A history of abortion extremism

In 2021, Johnson also attempted to hijack the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill with an amendment that would have left England and Wales with one of the most extreme abortion laws in the world. Her amendment, if successful, would have left no abortion law regulating abortion up until birth, thereby making abortion legal on demand, for any reason up until birth, including sex-selective abortion.

Ahead of the consideration of her amendment, over 800 medical professionals signed an open letter to Diana Johnson urging her to withdraw her amendment.

Diana Johnson has also led other failed attempts to make extreme changes to abortion legislation.

Abortion extremism unpopular among voters

Her extreme position on abortion is deeply unpopular with Labour voters and the general public. 

Polling shows that only 1% of Labour voters support increasing the abortion time limit to above the current 24-week limit, while 60% want to see the limit reduced to 20 weeks or below.

The polling also shows that 89% of Labour voters oppose sex-selective abortion being legal.

Polling published by the Daily Telegraph earlier this year shows that more than half of the general public agree that it should remain the case that a woman is breaking the law if she has an abortion of a healthy baby after the current 24-week legal time limit up until birth. Only 16% disagreed.

Diana Johnson’s position in the Home Office could be a cause for particular alarm among new Labour voters who have been motivated to vote for the party in this election because the party has positioned itself as centrist and deliberately away from the more radical positions it took under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership. This polling shows that Johnson’s extreme plans for changes to abortion legislation are anything but mainstream.

This year, a number of high-profile commentators, some of whom take a pro-choice position on abortion, have come out against Diana Johnson’s proposals to make extreme changes to abortion legislation.

This has been accompanied by a large amount of mainstream media coverage covering the many problems with these proposals, and highlighting other voices who have spoken out against them. 

Spokesperson for Right To Life UK, Catherine Robinson, said “Diana Johnson has a track record of leading attempts to introduce extreme abortion legislation during her time in Parliament. This has included failed attempts to introduce abortion up to birth and legalise sex-selective abortion”.

“Her extreme views are radically out of step not only with the general public but in particular with Labour voters, the vast majority of whom do not want to see abortion being made legal up until birth”.

Polling shows that only 1% of Labour voters support increasing the abortion time limit to above the current 24-week limit, while 60% want to see the limit reduced to 20 weeks or below. The same polling also shows that 89% of Labour voters oppose sex-selective abortion being legal”.

“We are calling on the Government to make it clear that they will reject any attempts to make extreme changes to abortion laws and assure voters across the country that Diana Johnson will not be allowed to use her new position as a Home Office Minister to introduce extreme changes to abortion legislation”.

Dear reader,

You may be surprised to learn that our 24-week abortion time limit is out of line with the majority of European Union countries, where the most common time limit for abortion on demand or on broad social grounds is 12 weeks gestation.

The latest guidance from the British Association of Perinatal Medicine enables doctors to intervene to save premature babies from 22 weeks. The latest research indicates that a significant number of babies born at 22 weeks gestation can survive outside the womb, and this number increases with proactive perinatal care.

This leaves a real contradiction in British law. In one room of a hospital, doctors could be working to save a baby born alive at 23 weeks whilst, in another room of that same hospital, a doctor could perform an abortion that would end the life of a baby at the same age.

The majority of the British population support reducing the time limit. Polling has shown that 70% of British women favour a reduction in the time limit from 24 weeks to 20 weeks or below.

Please click the button below to sign the petition to the Prime Minister, asking him to do everything in his power to reduce the abortion time limit.