Ireland votes to overturn abortion ban

“The Irish are poised to end, perhaps in a landslide, one of the most restrictive abortion bans in the developed world, according to incoming tallies of the votes cast in Friday’s referendum,” as the Washington Post is reporting.

“The early count of votes on Saturday mirrored the results of two respected exit polls that suggested a decisive win for the campaign to repeal the Eighth Amendment to the Irish constitution. The 1983 amendment enshrined an ‘equal right to life’ for mothers and ‘the unborn’ and outlawed almost all abortions — even in cases of rape, incest, fatal fetal abnormality or risk to maternal health.

“’What we have seen today is a culmination of a quiet revolution that has been taking place in Ireland for the past 10 or 20 years,’ said Prime Minister Leo Varadkar.

“After the vote to repeal the Eighth Amendment has been certified, Ireland’s political leadership has promised that Parliament will quickly pass a new law guaranteeing unrestricted abortion up to 12 weeks, and beyond that in cases of fatal fetal abnormalities or serious risks to a mother’s health. That would bring Ireland’s access to abortion more in line with the other 27 members of the European Union.

“Varadkar said the new legislation would be enacted by the end of the year. ‘The people knew what we had in mind, and I don’t think it would be right to depart from that at all,’ he said.

“Simon Harris, Ireland’s Minister of Health, said a bill would be written this summer. ‘The people of Ireland have told us to get on with it,’ he said.

The rest of the article is here.

Author: jeffpelline

Jeff Pelline is a veteran editor and award-winning journalist - in print and online. He is publisher of Sierra FoodWineArt magazine and its website Jeff covered business and technology for The San Francisco Chronicle for 12 years, and he was a founding editor and Editor of CNET News for eight years, among other positions. Jeff has a bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley and a master's from Northwestern University. His hobbies include sailing, swimming, and trout fishing in the Sierra.

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