Abortion Referendum Reaches LA As Stars Weigh In On Divisive Debate

Abortion Referendum Reaches LA As Stars Weigh In On Divisive Debate

Abortion Referendum Reaches LA As Stars Weigh In On Divisive Debate

"Ireland has voted by a landslide margin to change the constitution so that abortion can be legalised, according to an exit poll conducted for The Irish Times by Ipsos/MRBI", the Irish Times reported.

Effectively, that means abortion is banned in Ireland unless the pregnancy poses a real and substantial risk to the mother's life.

Polling stations close at 21.00 GMT and national broadcaster RTE plans to publish an exit poll at 22.30 GMT.

On the other side of the aisle, pro-abortion and pro-gay Prime Minister Leo Varadkar of Ireland has declared the vote is a "once in a generation' opportunity to "end Ireland's legacy of shame".

Each year, it's estimated 3,500 Irish women travel overseas, mostly to Britain, to terminate pregnancies - and about 2,000 more illegally obtain abortion pills or administer the procedure themselves.

"Hopefully it'll be a Yes vote", he said. The Eighth Amendment had prevented any further relaxation of the ban.

Ireland adopted the ban in 1983, but support has waned as the country has grown more liberal, legalizing divorce and gay marriage.

If the repeal effort is successful, the government has vowed to introduce legislation later this year to establish the circumstances under which Irish women may pursue the procedure.

Both women in the USA and Irish citizens, specifically as they vote on the referendum to repeal their 35-year-old abortion ban, would do well to remember this when advocating abortion exclusively for "women's rights" as a woman's choice.

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The newspaper commissioned the poll which gauged the votes of 4,000 people leaving polling stations at 160 different locations, encompassing all 26 counties.

The contested amendment requires authorities to equally protect the right to life of a mother and that of a fetus, from the moment of conception.

"Women and girls should not be made into healthcare refugees when they are in a time of crisis", said Niamh Kelly, 27, who paid 800 euros and traveled 20 hours to return home from Hanoi where she works as an English teacher.

"If anything, I'm sitting a little bit more comfortably after the last week having viewed the debates and the general moods and commentary of the "No" camp", said Richard Colwell, chief executive of Red C, whose latest poll on Sunday showed 56 percent for, 27 percent against and 14 percent still undecided.

The 28-year-old Harry Potter star tweeted: "A vote for the freedom to choose, a vote for women's rights, a vote for women's control over their bodies, a vote for women's health & safety, a vote towards equality".

The official referendum vote count isn't expected to be completed until Saturday afternoon local time.

Ireland does not give its expatriates absentee ballots or the option to vote in embassies.

Yesterday, nine Irish women will have travelled to England to terminate a pregnancy.

It suggested the highest "Yes" vote was in Dublin, where 77 percent of voters were in favor, but there was no sharp urban/rural divide as in previous referendums on the subject, with all provincial areas backing the proposals.

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