12 out of 13 Irish MEPs have disgracefully voted in favour of the radical proposal to insert abortion within the EU’s charter of fundamental rights on 11 April. Ciarán Cuffe from the Green Party was absent.
Simon Harris was in Brussels on 11 April meeting Ursula von der Leyen in his first trip abroad since becoming Taoiseach on Tuesday. All five of his Fine Gael MEPs voted in favour of this resolution. It should be noted that this is a non-binding resolution and the EU has no competence when it comes to abortion. Amending the EU Charter is limited by the Charter itself, and would need to be approved by all member states.
Whilst the vote is symbolic, it places undue pressure on specific EU member states such as Poland, Malta and Slovakia. It states that the EU Parliament is in favour of declaring abortion a fundamental right. This is an extreme step and it is shocking that Irish MEPs have voted for such a measure. They must now explain this to their constituents, who will be voting in the European Parliament elections on 7th June.