Following Parliament’s decision to force abortion on Northern Ireland, pro-abortion MPs have made clear that they want to remove almost all legal protection surrounding the provision of abortion in England and Wales as well.
Last week, (23/07) pro-abortion MP Diana Johnson, put forward an ‘Urgent Question’ to the Home Secretary about the removal almost all legal protections surrounding the provision of abortion in England and Wales.
On behalf of the Government, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Jackie Doyle-Price MP, made assurances that the Government had no plans to change the abortion law in England and Wales. She also said that the Domestic Abuse Bill will not be used as an occasion to debate abortion.
She went on to say: “The question of potential reform to Northern Ireland’s abortion laws, through the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill if no restored Government are in place, should not be cause to reform the system in England and Wales.”
However, this is not much solace to the pro-life movement as the Government did not, at least initially, support any abortion amendments to the recent Northern Ireland Bill. Yet they were nevertheless accepted by the Speaker and rushed through the House of Commons.
Even without Government backing, given the political leanings of the Speaker of the House of Commons, it is likely that amendments put forward by backbench MPs, which would seek to move legal protections surrounding abortion in England and Wales, will in fact be selected. It is expected that these amendments will attempt to remove section 58 and 59 of the Offences Against the Person Act (1861), which will make abortion legal up until 28 weeks.
This will also remove protections surrounding the current abortion law which serve to ensure that women are not being coerced into having an abortion and protect the right of doctors not to be forced to act against their consciences by being made to participate in the provision of abortion.
The abortion lobby have been clear that their ultimate goal here is to have abortion on demand, for any reason, up to birth. If there is any indication that they feel they can get this proposal through Parliament, it’s very likely they will be aiming for abortion up to birth, rather the 28-week cut-off proposed in Northern Ireland.
It is expected that the abortion lobby’s extreme abortion amendments will be tabled in September or October.
Clare McCarthy from Right To Life UK said:
“Given the rapidity with which the Northern Ireland Bill passed through both Houses of Commons with no public scrutiny and almost no Parliamentary scrutiny either, it is possible that something similar could happen with the Domestic Abuse Bill later this year.”
“Ms Johnson’s ‘Urgent Question’ proves that the abortion lobby’s goal goes a lot further than seeking to impose abortion legislation on Northern Ireland. If these proposals were to become law, it would bring about one of the world’s most extreme abortion laws. This Bill would have the effect of making the Abortion Act 1967, along with most of the legal safeguards it provides, void through to at least 28-weeks, i.e over seven months, gestation.
“Their ultimate goal however is to have abortion, for any reason, up to birth. Ann Furedi made this abundantly clear at the London launch of the ‘We Trust Women’ campaign, when she said, ‘I want to be very, very clear and blunt… there should be no legal upper limit.’ This would mean that legislation would allow for abortion to take place at any moment throughout the entirety of the pregnancy.”