Tit for tat legislating

Mark Devenport has an interesting take from an English MP on the extension of the 1967 Abortion Act to Northern Ireland:

they took the view that if Northern Ireland MPs wanted to interfere in the time limits for abortion in England, then maybe English MPs should interefere in the ban on abortion here.

Or maybe even 42 day detention. All this was raised before during Harold Wilson’s first Government, but this time the debate is taking place amongst a group of GB MPs well used to legislating for Northern Ireland.

  • Ahem

    One more time. Why, Michael, do you call yourself ‘British’ or, come to that, ‘a Unionist’, when you speak and think thus of your fellow unionists and Britons?

  • TAFKABO

    What a bizzare question.

  • It was Sammy Mc Nally what done it

    Of course the DUP (and most Unionists) will “Never, Never, Never” admit that they have more in common with their Irish neigbours (in Non Iron and ROI) even when their neighbours across the sea tell them so.

    P.S. I often thought that one of the main reasons Unionists didn’t want to be considered Irish was because of the dreadful Country and Western music to be heard blasting out when you stepped out into the countryside in ROI – and you cant blame them for that – but no – it can’t be that as the rural quarefellahs up North like that dreadful stuff as well.

  • Michael Shilliday

    Think thus? I don’t see that I expressed any opinion.

  • TAFKABO

    I think people in Northern Ireland have just as much in common, if not more so, with someone from Glasgow than they do with someone from Cork.

  • Partial Observer

    Whereas someone in Cork would have much more in common with someone from Edinburgh ;-0

  • TAFKABO

    Leith maybe.

  • willowfield

    Not anymore, Leith’s gone upmarket.

  • Was going to post something on this at EU but figured I’d wait and see if/how the NI MPs vote on this. If they’ve any integrity they’ll abstain, but who knows what will happen.

  • HappyPaddy

    At the end of the day even if all the 18 MP’s (-5 SF) voted together what difference would it make.
    This has always been the problem with Ireland/NI being in the UK.

  • HappyPaddy you could say that about Cornwall, or Yorkshire, or the Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, or in fact any small region of any large country.

  • Mayoman

    Didn’t know they had a different abortion law in Cornwall beano. You learn something new everyday! 😉

  • fair_deal

    The West Lothian question raises its head again. Hardly surprising.

  • iain

    “HappyPaddy you could say that about Cornwall, or Yorkshire, or the Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, or in fact any small region of any large country.”

    Indeed, and so then not being a small region in a large country is preferable.

    “I think people in Northern Ireland have just as much in common, if not more so, with someone from Glasgow than they do with someone from Cork. ”

    certainly. There the whole post industrial economic decline. there also a fair bit of the sectarianism still in Glasgow, though not nearly as bad as in NI. they don’t seem to have the same sectarianism in the Republic.

    On the other hand, We in Glasgow at least have some input into the government that actually can implement economic policy as parties of government organise here unlike in NI, so we’ve more in common with the people in Cork in that respect. Also, i’ve gone to Cork (and Dublin) for the odd weekend on the cheap flights and had a good time. i’d never go to Belfast. i’d be scared!

  • Steve

    Iain ya big girl pants Belfast isnt scary unless its after dark or July and August. unfortunately July ans August are the 2 big travel months

    Of course that could just be my take on it as I get instant credit and hospitality due to the whole Canadian accent thing( even if you all accuse me of being american)

    PS its nice that everybody has a cousin in Toronto, even I have a couple, but I personally don’t live with in a thousand miles of the place and that still sometimes is too close

  • Can we go back to the issue Devenport raised? It was:

    if Northern Ireland MPs wanted to interfere in the time limits for abortion in England, then maybe English MPs should interefere in the ban on abortion here.

    Now compare that with the reality as we know it so far:

    Yesterday there were two “free” votes.

    On both (hybrid-embryo research and “saviour siblings”), all the NI MPs who voted (that I can see at a quick scan) did so with the minority “Ayes”: Gregory Campbell; Nigel Dodds; Mark Durkan; Sylvia Hermon; William McCrea; Alastair McDonnell; Eddie McGready; Ian Paisley; Iris Robinson; David Simpson. They represented ten of the 163 votes against “saviour siblings” and 10 of the 223 against embryo research.

    That’s ten of the thirteen operating MPs. All of the same mind; and all against the majority of UK MPs’ opinion.

  • Reggie Yoof

    Michael-

    Any update on when you plan to relaunch the YU blog??

    I hear thing arn’t going to well in the new UYUC sink your props put out Cllr. Dunne.

    Any truth that you’ve lost almost all of your members at Queen’s to the TUV, with others resigning and some going to the DUP.

    What about Jordanstown, or does it still exist at all?

  • Good to see the liberal “set-the-people-free” mentality persisted into the second day of strenuous voting.

    The good Ian absented himself, but was amply deputised by the boy Sammy (obviously there’s difficult travelling from East Antrim to Westminster on a Monday).

    Lady Sylvia (looking for a job?) voted with the Cameroonian herd for twentieth week termination, but the usual suspects went for twelve (Wilson, the fragrant Iris, the Coleraine Clogger, Mark from the Foyle, Nigel, David S, Willie M, his close mate (err …) Eddie and Alastair.

    The pearl of wisdom of the whole debate came from Iris. She had the ultimate argument against single-sex parenting:

    Can [the Minister] envisage, down the road, a child going to primary school and being collected by two females or two males, and the bullying and abuse to which those children will be exposed; or going into their parents’ bedroom, as is natural for a child to do, and finding two women or two men making love?

    Now, if Iris lived in North London, she’d see even stranger things at the school gates. But we’re not into bedroom voyeurism, she should know. She was duly squelched by John Bercow:

    I appreciate that the hon. Member for Strangford has passionate views, and I respect her integrity on the matter, but I happen to disagree with her. I put it to the Minister that the hon. Lady’s argument is not simply against gay couples having access to IVF treatment but against gay adoption, the legal age of consent and gay equality per se.

    Interesting to see the sisterhood clinging together, even under such provocation. Dawn Primarola almost defended Our Lass:

    I believe that the debate would be improved if all hon. Members were direct and open about their views on the subject. The hon. Member for Strangford should be given for credit for being one of the few who is brutally honest about her views and expresses them in the Chamber. I hope that other hon. Members will do that instead of trying to conceal their arguments.

    “Brutally”? Iris? Oh dear!

    Beyond that, the debate was so scintillating only three observers chewed their arms off in boredom.

  • Jelly Tart User

    Jordanstown?
    Go away!
    There ain’t no Jordanstown, and there never was!

  • “the hon. Lady’s argument is not simply against gay couples having access to IVF treatment but against gay adoption, the legal age of consent and gay equality per se.”

    You could see how they could stretch her argument to be against gay adoption, but to suggest she is against the legal age of consent and “gay equality per se” is putting words in her mouth and sadly typical of those hypocrites who would force their brand of “liberalism” on the rest of the country – i.e. you make a (sometimes logical) argument against a specific piece of legislation and it’s because you hate all gays.

    It’s a bit like saying that if you don’t support the white elephant at the Maze you’re a raving mad Catholic-hating bigoted Rangers and Linfield supporting dinosaur.

  • beano @ 10:28 AM:

    So, if you please, explain how Iris’s interjection was precisely relevant to the amendment(s) under debate?

    Even the First Deputy Chairman found this difficult to appreciate:

    Order. It might be appropriate if we reverted to the content of the amendment that is currently under discussion.

    Iris’s later contribution was equally helpful:

    I speak tonight saddened by the approach taken by right hon. and hon. Members who wish to airbrush out the role of fatherhood. I notice that there are many grins on faces, but I stand by my faith and the word of God that man was created in the image of God and that woman was created from the rib of Adam to be his helpmeet and companion. That is the natural progression of procreation.

    I am so sorry that hon. Members are abusing my position as a Christian and that they will not listen to me or give me due respect. I ask where the rights of the Christian people of this country are, because they have spoken. A recent poll reported in the press here showed that 80 per cent. of people recognise the need for the traditional family. Hon. Members can all breathe sighs of relief or indignation, but I am telling the House that the word of God says that procreation is through a man and a woman. We are moving mountains to facilitate immorality and to bring the rights of lesbians above all others in this country. It is a shame, and hon. Members ought to hang their heads in shame. [My emphases. You couldn’t make this up.]

    This, let us recall, was a debate on the science and practice of IVF. Even Duncan Smith, then summing up for his amendment, found that difficult to follow.

    When the likes of Iris Robinson, and her fellow DUP throw-backs stalk the land, no wonder the generality of the UK regards NI as a small benighted place a long way away, in time and space — which was close to the point made when this thread was started.

  • I thought Iris’s speech was quite reasonable and if it annoyed the secularists, so what?

    I’m more interested in the absence from last night’s voting, as highlighted by Jim Allister, of Messrs Paisley, Robinson and Donaldson, the last being the chairman of the Assembly’s Pro-Life Group. Any DUP readers care to comment?

  • The Watchman @ 12:04 PM:

    “annoyed the secularists” ? — you’ve got to be joking. The reaction was amused irritation that anyone could be so ridiculously crass, irrelevant and unsympathetic.

    Some of us — nay, the majority of us — have moved on from phallocracy, subservient and obedient wives, and long-exploded mistranslations of the Hebrew tsela. That was what Iris Robinson was arguing for (read the debate!) in the context of 21st century bioscience!

    If some retards in NI persist in their 17th-century theme-park, on their heads be it. Just don’t expect the rest of us to pay for it, to accept their ayatollahs prescribing for our society, or to hold up evolution while they grow out of it.

  • Michael Shilliday

    Yoof,

    Good to see you’re still on the sauce.

  • So people who hold a different world view from you are “retards”, Malcolm?

  • The Watchman @ 01:34 PM:

    Only when they persist in misconceived errors, cannot be bothered to work out what they are saying, are totally irrelevant to the issue at question, fail to recognise the realities of life, explicitly contradict their position, indulge themselves in self-deception and stupor, and generally prink about for points and ha’pence.

    Furthermore, in the case of the blessed, holy and indivisible Iris — supportively married to an old lag but lecturing the rest of us on morality and life-style — , has spoken just four times in the House in a twelve month, votes just a third of the time, is dilatory in responding to emails and letters, but still collects £135,000 in Westminster allowances for such commitment (see theyworkforyou.com).

  • TAFKABO

    I thought Iris’s speech was quite reasonable and if it annoyed the secularists, so what?

    Well quite, though you seem to have failed to grasp the irony of praising a speech in which someone demanded their due respect for holding Christians beliefs and you casting aside the views of people on the basis they are secularists.
    If you think annoying secularists is fair game, more power to you, but don’t start gurning when us secularists, who are the majority, start pissing all over you adherence to fairy tales.

  • Ned’s Protege

    Michael-

    How about telling everyone why you comprehensivly F’ed up Queen’s YU.