On Wednesday, RTÉ’s Drivetime interviewed Senator Rónán Mullen about the Cabinet decision that day to proceed with legislation banning peaceful pro-life protests in the vicinity of abortion facilities.
Before Senator Mullen was introduced on the programme, presenter Sarah McInerney interviewed pro-abortion campaigner Dr Mary Favier.
Dr Favier was given a soft interview with no challenging questions in keeping with how RTÉ treats abortion supporters. At the end of the interview though, Ms McInerney announced that Dr Favier would be staying on the line to respond to whatever Senator Mullen had to say.
It’s important to note that Ms McInerney did not open things up to a debate between her two guests. She simply kept Dr Favier on the line to ensure she got the last word.
It is a well established ploy of pro-abortion campaigners ever since 2018 not to directly engage in on air debates with pro-life representatives as many of these same activists talk about the issue as settled and beyond debate. It is not clear whether Dr Favier refused to debate Senator Mullen but whether she did or didn’t she was given preferential treatment by RTÉ.
Dr Favier used her final intervention on the programme to dismiss many of the claims made by Senator Mullen, including taking issue with his claim that abortion numbers have risen sharply since the law changed in 2019. The claims in turn that Dr Favier made about the latest abortion figures were grossly misleading but when Senator Mullen tried to interject, his line was already cut and listeners to the programme would not have even been aware that he tried to challenge the false claims being made.
It’s just the latest trick in RTÉ’s shoddy and despicable treatment of the abortion issue. They have no standards anymore when it comes to fairness and objectivity.