European Parliament Elections on 23rd May 2014

European Parliament Elections on 23rd May 2014

ep parliament

The European Parliament Elections take place on Friday, 23rd May.  There are three constituencies in Ireland,  Dublin, South and Midlands North West.  

We asked the candidates in the European Elections the following four questions:

As a Member of the European Parliament, and notwithstanding the position of your political party (if applicable) will you:

(i)  vote against abortion at every opportunity.

(ii) vote against destructive embryonic stem cell research at every opportunity.

(iii) work with like-minded MEPS to advance the protection of life at all stages across Europe

(iv) work towards the repeal of the abortion legislation introduced in Ireland in 2013

Based on their responses and our own information, please find below information on the candidates.

 

Midlands-North-West Constituency

Senator Rónán Mullen (Ind) answered Yes to all four questions and has an outstanding pro-life track record. What distinguishes him from the other candidates is his consistent championing, both in the media and the Oireachtas, of the right to life at all stages. Senator Mullen has introduced a pro-life Bill in the Seanad and he voted against the abortion law last year. As a parliamentary delegate at the Council of Europe he led an initiative which was adopted by the Council protecting the rights of doctors and healthcare professionals to conscientiously opt out of performing abortions.

Pat ‘the Cope’ Gallagher MEP (FF) answered Yes to all four questions and has a consistent pro-life record in the European Parliament and has publicly expressed his opposition to last year’s Dáil abortion law.

Marian Harkin MEP (Ind) didn’t directly answer our four questions but her office sent us the following:  “Marian is pro-life, her voting record in the Parliament is pro-life and if elected she will continue to vote this way”.

Senator Thomas Byrne (FF) didn’t directly answer our four questions but said ” I confirm that I am, and always have been, pro-life”.   Senator Byrne voted against the Government’s abortion legislation in the Seanad.

Fine Gael candidates Mairead McGuinness MEP and Jim Higgins MEP did not respond to our four questions.    They have never publicly disassociated themselves from their party’s role in introducing abortion in Ireland.

Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan TD (Ind) did not respond to our questions and he voted in favour of abortion legislation in the Dáil last year.

Cllr. Matt Carthy (SF) did not respond to our questions and has been an active supporter of legalising abortion in Ireland. Sinn Féin as a party has consistently ignored the ethical distinction between necessary life-saving medical interventions in pregnancy and induced abortion (where the life of the baby is intentionally ended).

Senator Lorraine Higgins (Lab) did not respond to our questions and voted in favour of the abortion legislation in the Seanad.

 

South Constituency

Theresa Heaney (CDP) answered Yes to our four questions, opposed the Government’s abortion legislation and has called for its repeal.  If elected, she will campaign as an MEP for the protection of human life at all stages.

Brian Crowley MEP (FF) didn’t directly answer our questions but said ” As my record shows, I have always been, and will continue to be, pro-life.”  He has consistently opposed abortion as a Member of the European Parliament.

Kieran Hartley (FF) answered Yes to all four questions and has publicly stated his opposition to the Government’s abortion legislation.   He said in his response to our question about working towards a repeal of the abortion legislation the following: “Should I be fortunate enough to be elected I will work with whatever tools available to me as an MEP to work towards a repeal.”

Dónal Ó Ríordáin (FN) answered Yes to all four questions and is opposed to the Government’s abortion legislation.

Diarmuid Flynn (Ind) did not respond to our questions but states his own position on his website here

Simon Harris TD (FG) did not respond to our questions and voted for abortion in the Dáil after giving numerous public commitments that he would strenuously oppose the introduction of abortion.

Senator Deirdre Clune (FG) did not respond to our questions and voted in favour of the abortion legislation in the Seanad.

Seán Kelly MEP (FG) didn’t directly respond to our questions and has never publicly disassociated himself from Fine Gael’s role in introducing  abortion in Ireland.

Liadh Ní Riada (SF) did not respond to our questions.  Sinn Féin as a party supported the abortion legislation in 2013 and has consistently ignored the ethical distinction between necessary life-saving medical interventions in pregnancy and induced abortion (where the life of the baby is intentionally ended).

Grace O Sullivan (GP) did not respond to our questions.

 

Dublin Constituency

Unlike the other European Constituencies, it is regrettable that the majority of candidates in Dublin support the recent abortion legislation. We can only hope that this situation will change when a new politics of trustworthiness emerges led by politicians of the calibre of those who voted against the Government’s abortion law.

Cllr. Mary Fitzpatrick (FF) did not respond to our questions and supported the Government’s abortion legislation.

Brian Hayes TD (FG) did not respond to our questions but broke his pro-life promise and voted for abortion in the Dáil.

Nessa Childers MEP (Ind) did not respond to our questions.   She does not have a pro-life voting record in the European Parliament.

Emer Costello MEP (LAB) did not respond to our questions.   She does not have a pro-life voting record in the European Parliament

Paul Murphy (Socialist Party) MEP did not directly answer our questions but responded to say he was in favour of abortion.

Bríd Smith (People Before Profit) did not respond to our questions but said she is in favour of abortion.

Eamon Ryan (GP) did not respond to our questions.  He has called for greater supports for women in crisis pregnancy situations. However, he supports the provision of abortion in certain circumstances.

Lynn Boylan (SF) did not respond directly to our questions but said that as a party Sinn Féin supported the abortion legislation in 2013.  Sinn Féin has consistently ignored the ethical distinction between necessary life-saving medical interventions in pregnancy and induced abortion (where the life of the baby is intentionally ended).

Raymond Whitehead (DDI) did not respond to our questions but has said he supports repeal of the abortion law and opposes EU interference in Ireland’s abortion laws.