National Right to Life (NRL) is reporting on the debate which brought together both sides of the issue concerning next week’s referendum on the 8th amendment to the Irish Constitution which provides equal protection to mothers and unborn children. Voters will go to the polls on May 26 to decide whether or not to repeal the amendment and legalize abortion in the land.
The problem for pro-life supporters – also referred to as “anti-repealers” – is that they can’t get fair coverage of their position, which has led to lopsided polls in favor of repeal. Even social media turned against them last week when both Facebook and Google opted to either cancel or restrict their plans for huge online advertising campaigns in the final days of the campaign. This, coupled with the country’s slanted media coverage, has placed anti-repealers in the worst possible position.
However, last night’s debate was a real eye-opener for the public, even according to the abortion-loving press.
The Irish Times’ reporter Pat Leahy, who the NRL describes as “one of the very few reporters who makes even a passing effort to be fair,” reported that Monday’s televised debate on the abortion referendum provided a significant boost to the pro-life campaign.
“The No side was better prepared and better organized for the debate and, in Maria Steen of the Iona Institute, they had the best performer on the night,” Leahy reported.
“The No supporters in the audience were more enthusiastic for their side’s contributions, and antagonistic to the Yes side’s speakers. In a live environment, this matters: the Yes panelists looked quite taken aback for much of the debate.”
Leahy reported that when confronted with a hostile audience, the pro-repeal side seemed very uncomfortable.
The outcome of the debate left “anti-repealers” rejuvenated and found the em embarking on "a postering and leafleting offensive to complement the final canvassing push as the referendum campaign heads into its final, decisive phase,” Leahy writes.
He also noted that there was strong viewership for the program, with the numbers rising as the debate wore on.
“This suggests that viewers were not turned off by the combative nature of the exchanges, or by the audience participation,” Leahy writes. “It also means that a lot of voters will have seen a good night for the No campaign.”
Even though the pro-repeal side still has quite an advantage in the polls, the anti-repeal side has reason to hope that two more upcoming debates will help to shift the momentum in their favor in the final days before the vote.
Regardless of how ruthlessly the pro-life position in Ireland is being censored, word appears to be finally getting out.
Despite the censorship and biased news coverage, in the final analysis, nothing will matter more than the worldwide prayer campaigns that are storming heaven on behalf of Ireland's innocent unborn and the desperate mothers who will be the victims of this repeal.
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