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30 January 2018

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Sinn Féin’s Louise O’Reilly calls for united, strong campaign to repeal the Eighth Amendment

Louise O'Reilly TD speaking in the Dáil this afternoon

"The insertion of the 8th Amendment into the Constitution was a heinous wrong perpetrated against Irish women. It now falls to us who want to see change and see the 8th Amendment banished as a relic of the past to join together, to stay strong, and campaign as one to see the 8th Amendment Repealed.” - Louise O'Reilly TD

Sinn Féin’s Repeal the Eighth Campaign spokesperson, Louise O’Reilly TD, has commended Taoiseach Leo Varadkar on his commitment to hold a referendum to repeal the Eighth Amendment.

Teachta O’Reilly has also called on An Taoiseach to secure an end of May date for the referendum on the 8th amendment, so that younger voters can have their views on abortion heard. 

This comes after the Cabinet meeting last night in which the Government agreed to propose an early summer referendum to repeal and replace the Eighth Amendment. 

Speaking during this afternoon’s Leaders’ Questions in the Dáil, Teachta O’Reilly asked the if the Taoiseach would “commit to holding the referendum at the end of May to facilitate voting of students and young people”, before they go their separate ways at end of the school term. 

The Fingal TD believes that the younger generation will be “crucial” for the Repeal campaign to win the referendum. 

Speaking in the Dáil, Teachta O’Reilly said: “Today is a momentous day for Irish women and for Irish society. The insertion of the 8th Amendment into the Constitution was a heinous wrong perpetrated against Irish women.

“It now falls to us who want to see change and see the 8th Amendment banished as a relic of the past to join together, to stay strong, and campaign as one to see the 8th Amendment Repealed.”

Louise O’Reilly TD also called on Taoiseach Varadkar to publish the advice of the Attorney General in full, saying the decision to insert an enabling clause into the Constitution, for the Oireacthas to legislate for abortion, was one that was not endorsed by the 8th Amendment Committee. 

“I think it would be necessary for politicians and the public to see this information so we can understand the decision not to propose Repeal Simpliciter.”

Recognising that all of those who support the Repeal campaign must come together and be unified in their campaign, Teachta O’Reilly said: “Perhaps I’ll pop over to Dublin West and we can knock on some doors together with Deputy Coppinger and Deputy Burton. And you might consider joining me in Fingal.”

The eighth amendment must go and Sinn Féin are ready for the Repeal campaign. The party has a strong view that the constitution was never the appropriate place to address issues of women’s health, and compassion and trust in women must prevail.

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