Peadar Toibín still opposed to 'abortion on demand' up until 12 weeks

Sinn Féin TD for Meath West Peadar Toibín has said that he still opposed to "abortion on demand" up until 12 weeks but would reserve his position on how he would vote on any legislation to repeal the Eighth amendment until it had been published.

Speaking on Today with Sean O'Rourke, Mr Toibín said that people on both sides must respect that it is the democratic will of the Irish people to repeal the Eighth amendment.

"My views are clear, I oppose abortion and believe that everybody should be protected but right now I think there is a desire democratically in the State for the Oireachtas to decide what kind of abortion legislation is developed in the future.

"I think it's easy to extrapilate, we have the benefit of the RTÉ exit poll which broke down the reasons why people stated that they were going to vote yes.

"I think the vast majority probably want to see abortion made available in the cases of life-limiting conditions or fatal foetal abnormalities and in the cases of rape or incest...it's my objective to make sure that I don't prevent legislation coming in which actually allows for that.

"I don't agree with the abortion on demand for 12 weeks and I still very strongly hold that view.

The RTÉ exit poll states that roughly 50% of the population who voted actually don't agree with abortion on demand up until 12 weeks as well and I would oppose that particular element of the legislation.

He spoke of not wanting to see abortion on demand or to see this country following trends of other countries, suggesting seeing up to 10 to 12,000 after seven or 8 years, "that's not something I want to see in this country".

Mr Toibín said that he would attend the Sinn Féin Ard Fheis in Belfast next week and would strongly campaign "that policy isn't changed to the 12 weeks on demand".

He will also campaign in favour of a freedom of conscience motion.

Mr Toibín said that he would reserve his position on how he would vote on any legislation to repeal the Eighth, until it had been published and scrutinised, "there's no way that I'm going to give a view otherwise".

Following the result of the referendum, Mr Toibín called on the government to live up to promises of investment in maternity services, perinatal hospital care, rape crisis support, health services, housing, childcare and equal pay for women.

He said that the next budget should be "women-centric".

You can listen to the full interview below:

Digital Desk


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