McDonald's stance on queen 'nauseating'


SEANAD REPORT:IT WAS NO wonder that there were floods in Belfast on Wednesday night – they were caused by the tears of republicans looking at their iconic hero shaking hands with the queen, Denis Landy (Lab) said.

Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald appeared on Vincent Browne’s television show in the wake of the queen’s visit, Mr Landy said. A little over a year ago, when the queen visited the Republic, he had stood alongside the then mayor of Cashel, the late Michael Brown, just before he shook the queen’s hand.

“He said to me ‘Am I doing the right thing?’ He knew that I knew that Mary Lou McDonald had spent two hours telling him not to meet the queen. Fourteen months later, she defended it on national television. It’s nauseating.”

A calm debate in the House before the summer recess might be helpful to the expert group examining the issue of abortion, by letting its members know what the representatives of the people thought on the matter, Paul Bradford (FG) suggested.

While expert groups brought their expertise to the table, perhaps they also brought their personal prejudices. When the group had reported, the Oireachtas and the Government would make decisions.

Deputy Seanad leader Ivana Bacik (Lab) said she had suggested that the Advertising Standards Authority should be empowered to consider complaints about advertising relating to abortion. She had watched with dismay as her call had descended into a debate in which various Senators had exhibited their misapprehensions.

Despite a constant refrain on the supposed connection between abortion and mental impacts on those who underwent the procedure, research by the Crisis Pregnancy Agency and international bodies did not bear this out.

Fidelma Healy-Eames (FG) said that while abortion might appear to be a solution in the short term, she knew that not everyone would hold with the view that there were no after-effects.