NDP opens abortion debate with pro-abortion motion, now back-pedalling
OTTAWA, Ontario, May 15, 2014 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The pro-abortion NDP party typically responds to any abortion-related legislation in the House of Commons by saying that the abortion debate is closed in Canada, and should not be opened. However, the party unwittingly did just that this week, and now appears to be trying to put the lid back on the proverbial can of worms.
The party has decided not to bring NDP MP Niki Ashton’s pro-abortion motion to vote yesterday or today, despite having control of the House agenda on both these days and having put Ashton's motion on the notice list for upcoming opposition debates.
“It’s pretty clear the NPD have stepped back because they realize they’re helping the pro-life movement,” said Jack Fonseca of Campaign Life Coalition (CLC) to LifeSiteNews. “In their eagerness to prove the NDP loves abortion more than Trudeau’s Liberals, they’ve done what we’ve been asking for: re-opened the abortion debate.”
Ashton, the NDP’s critic for the Status of Women, tabled Motion-510 last week. It asks the House of Commons to affirm a “woman’s right to choose abortion” as a “fundamental question of equality and human rights.”
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The motion was filed one day after Liberal leader Justin Trudeau announced that pro-life candidates would be barred from running in the Liberal Party’s ‘open’ nominations.
CBC’s Kady O'Malley speculated that the NDP motion was crafted to put Trudeau's pro-abortion candidate pledge to what she called a “pre-election test” that would force current Liberal caucus members to “put their positions on the official record just before the next campaign gets underway.”
O'Malley further speculated that the move could “backfire,” giving the pro-life movement its “first solid shot in the arm in years.”
“Canadians are once again reading about the issue of abortion in the nation’s newspapers, TV screens and radio programs, thanks to Niki Ashton,” said Fonseca. “It’s hard to imagine I’d ever say this, but we’re in Niki Ashton’s debt. She has done for us what Prime Minister Stephen Harper refuses to do.”
Alissa Golob, CLC’s youth director, called it “ironic” that Ashton, who recently opposed a motion condemning female gendercide on the grounds that it would re-open the abortion debate, is now championing a motion on expanding abortion access that has re-opened the debate.
Mike Schouten, campaign director of WeNeedaLaw.ca, also applauded Ashton and the NDP for “finally acknowledging that abortion is not a settled issue in Canada.” He criticized the party for being “out of line with the majority of Canadians in regards to their extreme position on the legality of abortion.”
“Every poll taken on the subject of abortion, no matter how it is phrased, shows that Canadians are unsettled by the status quo,” he said.
But Fonseca said that the decision to quash the debate the motion reveals that the NDP is “afraid of a vigorous debate.”
“They see what sort of dialogue is being stirred up already, and they don’t like it because the ‘human rights’ argument ultimately favors the pro-life cause.”
“We want to see this motion debated and voted upon in the House of Commons. The more Canadians get to talk about the abortion issue, the more that discussion will eventually arrive at the humanity of the child in the womb. Consequently, more and more Canadians will end up conceding that human beings, at whatever age, deserve human rights.”
“By referencing ‘equality’ and ‘human rights’ in her motion, Ashton has framed the debate just the way we like it to be framed,” he said.
Campaign Life Coalition is urging pro-lifers to contact their MP and ask them to vote against Ashton’s anti-life motion. The CLC Youth division has also set up a video tweet-a-thon campaign between May 13-21 as a way for young people to contact their MP.