Notwithstanding the fact that the “Citizens’ Assembly” was subjected to an almost unceasing barrage of pro-abortion propaganda over the course of its deliberations the outcome must still rank as extraordinary by any standard. That a totally random sample of 99 people chosen by the Red C Research could produce such a result would normally be beyond baffling.

Normally. But when you have a “random sample” of 99 citizens from 26 counties where a total of only 16 counties were represented at all by anyone, and that 10 had absolutely no representative in the Assembly, one suspects. When you find expert statistical evidence showing the likelihood of this occurring without bias is 6,500 to 1, suspicion may be considered confirmed. The so-called “Citizens’ Assembly” was rigged from the outset to produce a pre-ordained outcome and that is the outcome that it came up with.

But maybe a little too much. Just to ensure that there was not the slightest possibility of the Assembly recommending the retention of Article 40.3.3 of the Constitution, someone, somewhere, it seems, got carried away and appointed persons who came to conclusions not only at odds with what we might expect from the Irish electorate as a whole, but at variance even with the results of the most biased opinion polling, even that carried out on occasion by the same Red C Research. Despite the various press releases from pro-abortion sources quoted in the media welcoming the outcome, they must in fact be secretly embarrassed. The Assembly was supposed to play a major role in the propaganda for Repeal the Eighth in proving that the ordinary people of Ireland had been consulted, whereas in fact the intelligence of the ordinary people of Ireland has been insulted by the process and the result.

64{73593b307e001f5edd2e742b67bc8903c5a04d57d94dcd7b266977f3d0528720} of the Assembly voted for abortion on request for any reason whatsoever, or in reality none, since no reason would be required. Not even the most wild-eyed supporter of the repeal campaign believes they have anything like that much public support. They might wish for it, they might wish for even more, but they don’t believe they have it. As a consequence neither does anyone else.

The Citizen’s Assembly conclusions are now of no use to anyone. Not to pro-abortionists as propaganda, not for the Government to hide behind, and certainly not for the majority of women who really only want what is already in the Constitution, that their lives should be protected during pregnancy and the rights of their unborn child should be respected.

For our part the National Party remains resolved in the first instance to support the retention of the Eighth Amendment as currently worded, with the only Constitutional change to be recommended being to restore its meaning to what was clearly understood, even by opponents, prior to the obtuse judgement by the Supreme Court in the 1992 “X Case”. The only repeal required is the repeal of the 2013 Abortion Act.

By numerical co-incidence Principle No. Eight of the National Party states our position clearly: “The National Party insists that no law should permit the provision of Abortion in Ireland.”