Abortion poll 'contradictory'
A poll which shows that the majority of Irish adults support the introduction of legislation for the X case has been described as “highly contradictory” by an anti-abortion group.
The poll was conducted by Red C for the Sunday Business Post on a sample of over 1000 adults nationwide last week.
Some 85 per cent of those polled said they supported legislating for the X case by allowing abortion where the mother’s life is threatened, including by suicide.
There was also support among 63 per cent of those polled for limiting the X case by excluding the threat of suicide as grounds while 82 per cent said they supported extending abortion to all cases where the mother’s health is seriously threatened and in cases of rape.
The poll follows weeks of public discussion on abortion in the wake of the death of Savita Halappanavar (31) at Galway University Hospital on October 28th of septicaemia.
She had been 17 weeks pregnant when she presented a week earlier at the hospital’s maternity unit with back-pain.
She was found to be miscarrying and, says her husband, Praveen, asked repeatedly for a termination of the pregnancy over a three-day period. He says this was refused as there was a foetal heartbeat present and “this is a Catholic country”.
In response to the poll the Pro Life Campaign said the answers to the different questions were “highly contradictor” and showed a “very high level of public confusion on the issue mainly to do with the distinction between necessary medical interventions in pregnancy and abortion”.
Dr Ruth Cullen of the Pro Life Campaign welcomed the “high level of support for a constitutional amendment to limit the X case” and said it was “very apparent” that there was “huge confusion about the distinction between necessary medical treatments in pregnancy and abortion”.
She added that as the debate continues “we are confident it will become clear that legislation for the X case would not in fact be restrictive but would involve wide-ranging abortion.”