Tragically the present government of Ireland under Premier Garret Fitzgerald has gone back on its earlier solemn promise to support a Human Life Amendment to the Irish Constitution. It has proposed a wording that can only be described as an absolute pro-life disaster. The wording does not fulfill the government’s commitment to a pro-life amendment. It does not prohibit abortion but rather would permit the Senate and the Dail (the Parliament) to legalize it at any time. It does not acknowledge, yet alone guarantee, the right to life of the unborn. Under it, the European Court of Human Rights could overrule the current Irish bill and legalize abortion in Ireland. Finally, it applies only to laws passed after the Irish Constitution was adopted (1935) and does not cover prior British laws such as the 1861 law, which is currently in place and currently forbids abortion in Ireland.
The proposed amendment wording has been rejected by every pro-life group in Ireland. These groups have asked for a complete recording and have called for the Irish Attorney General’s resignation. The Catholic Bishops of Ireland, who had remained silent until now, have publicly condemned the new wording and have now come out in favor of the original wording which had been proposed by the previous government under Charles Haughey.