PM Sides with NDP on ‘human life’ motion

- September 18th, 2012

Conservative MP Stephen Woodworth

Prime Minister Stephen Harper got rare praise from the NDP for siding with the left-wing party against a motion from a Conservative MP.

“I appreciate that the prime minister … has clearly stated that there will be no support for M-312,” New Democrat MP Francoise Boivin said on Monday.

Harper has urged his caucus to oppose Tory MP Stephen Woodworth’s motion that would strike a committee to study whether a child is a human life at some point before full birth.

The prime minister has warned that he’s against debating abortion, but Woodworth says the issue is more fundamental than that.

“Does anyone believe that we need to pretend that a child at eight or nine months development before birth is not a human being in order to justify abortion?” he said. “Does abortion access really depend upon that fraud?”

Boivin refuses to say whether it’s possible a child is human even five minutes before birth, fearing the implications for abortion.

“Before the birth there is absolutely no point for me to tell you what I think because the law in Canada is it’s up to the woman to decide what she does with her body,” Boivin said.

Woodworth’s motion is up for a final hour of debate on Friday and will be voted on next week Wednesday.

He’s not optimistic the motion will pass.

“The prime minister’s position has likely depressed the support it might have received from some people,” said Woodworth.

Categories: Conservatives, General, Government, Health, NDP, Politics, Social issues

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8 comments

  1. bill g says:

    dear prime minister Harper, it is disappointing that you are against motion to determine when life begins,this is a very important issue,the fact that canada has no abortion law, babies can be aborted at any stage in pregnancy this is wrong, and encourages abortion to be used as birth control i also feel that abortions are covered under our health care system yet a married couple husband&wife who are unable to have children and want children have to pay for fertilization treatments. billg

  2. Laura V says:

    Sad day in Canada when we cannot even have a discussion about the humanity of the unborn child. When I was pregnant I knew that I would give birth to a human being….without a doubt. A truthful person will concede that the humanity of the unborn child depends upon the feelings of the mother: two pregnant women standing beside each other–each 3 months pregnant. One wants the child/the other does not. For the first she is having a baby; the second has “something” inside of her that she can dispose of, without any consequence. When humanity is dependent upon the “feelings” of another person, then we are all in trouble. Anyone can decide that someone else should not be alive. The fact that the unborn baby is living off of someone else is inconsequential. A two day old baby cannot take care of itself–it requires someone to meet its every need. Do we kill the newborn?? (not yet anyway); a person in a body cast for months cannot take care of himself at all–do we kill that person to avoid the sacrifice necessary to care for him? (That person will recover, just as the newborn/unborn will grow into a human person.) Rape, incest and life of the mother are all red herrings. Small percentage of abortions are due to rape/incest; life of the mother was recently proven irrelevant by a panel of expert doctors in Europe–it is never necessary to kill the child to save the mother they said. Canada is the only country in the world that has absolutely no protection for unborn children and we are all paying for the service of abortion with our tax dollars. Shame on our legislators and shame on the Prime Minister for not even allowing a debate…it is an absolute disgrace. The MP’s are cowering in fear of the media/extremists/feminists. When someone decides your life is not worth living, remember it all started in the womb.

  3. Jon says:

    It’s sad that people are quick to judge Harper’s move on this, the bill proposes a study into where life starts, but we don’t have that ability, why would we waste tax payer money on a study which would ultimately end up a restriction based on personal belief no one knows when a soul enters the body, or If this thing called a soul exists, so again why make a committee to determine something we could not possibly know without a doubt. Right now it’s a woman’s right to do what she wants with her body, and if we wish to stop abortion being used as birthcontrol, then perhaps we should address the issues causing unwanted pregnancies

  4. Skulander says:

    Wonderful news!!!

    The motion musn’t only be crushed. It must suffer a spectacular defeat. For once, I agree with Harper on this one.

    Because to have or not to have an abortion is not a decision Woodworth, Harper, myself or ANYONE for that matter can make for another woman. This is a deeply personal, thought-out choice and one must respect the pregnant woman’s decision.

  5. Chanty says:

    Dear misguided billg;
    Although there are no restrictions on abortion in Canada, this idea that people who are pregnant will just go in for an abortion at 8.5 months willy-nilly is completely absurd. 90% of abortions happen within the first trimester. Only 1.5% happen in the third trimesters, and they happen for one of two main reasons: Either there was a health or life risk with regards to the parent or fetus, OR, there were too many obstacles to get one sooner. For example, the further away you live from a major city, the further away you are from a clinic. A patient may need to fly in to any given major city in order to obtain an abortion, which of course costs money not only for a flight, but also accommodations such as hotel, or even childcare since 61% of people seeking abortions are already parents.
    If you care so much about “life” as you and your cohorts claim, then you should care about the lives of the pregnant people who die due to illegal abortion. The fact remains that 70,000 pregnant people die every single year around the world due to illegal abortion, leaving behind 220,000 kids since, as I mentioned, 61% of people seeking abortions are already parents.
    So if it’s not your uterus, it’s not your decision.

  6. LKM says:

    It is logically impossible to grant to a fetus rights on equal terms with its mother, without one parties’ rights eventually infringing upon the others. Not only is a fetus physically attached to and residing within a woman’s body, – ie not a ‘separate individual’, in any sense of either word – but until it is born – and this is where the legal aspect comes in – it is solely dependent upon her body for life. As the point of birth is the first time the child becomes independent of its mother, that is when legal rights are granted – when it becomes a separate individual. Unique DNA and ‘personhood’ are irrelevant, and total smokescreens for what Woodworth et al are trying to do – ban abortion by assigning rights to a party that cannot think, reason, nor feel, an act which will inevitably take the same rights away from pregnant women – who CAN think, reason, and feel pain.

    As for so-called ‘late-term abortions’, they are INCREDIBLY rare – barely 1% of abortions performed according to StatsCan – and are only done when the mother’s life is in danger, or the fetus isn’t viable. There are many medical conditions, affecting either or both parties that can’t be discovered until late in the pregnancy; women who choose abortion do so at the soonest opportunity – there’s no reason any woman would wait until their 6th month to abort, that’s a anti-abortion myth. The fact is, the later an abortion is performed, the riskier it is, and the more complicated – to dilate the cervix can take several hours, with the procedure being carried out sometimes the next day – also, doctors who can / are willing to perform them aren’t widely available (esp. in a country with as widespread a population as Canada) meaning women may have to travel and stay overnight, and in the US, where abortions aren’t covered by many health care plans, they can cost upwards of $9000 – so much for the ‘abortion of convenience’ argument.

    These aren’t healthy women aborting healthy fetuses. Why on EARTH would anyone who considers themselves ‘prolife’ want to intrude upon the private, painful medical decisions of a woman who wanted a pregnancy but couldn’t keep it at risk of her own life?

  7. sharifah says:

    Unless a fetus is self-sustaining outside of the mother’s body, it functions exactly as a parasite does.

    FINE – you want to make all the decisions. Then “birth” the fetus, through some artificially created, or intrusive means (how about a ceasearean??) and have it sustain life outside of the mother’s body.

    Then you can make the decision how it will live, and society will bear the cost.

    Full term abortions rarely happen unless it’s a life-threatening situation.

    Don’t want abortions – make education and prevention of pregnancy a priority. Make it FREE!! Put your money where your mouth is…

    Or I suppose, telling people how to NOT get pregnant, violates your rights to keep your children in ignorance????

  8. Jennifer says:

    LKM, Chanty, Skulander great comments. I’m happy to agree with the PM on this issue. We generally don’t often see eye to eye. Laura V, you don’t think that the women deciding they must have an abortion for whatever reason deal with consequences. What about the mental consequences they must deal with knowing they needed to make this choice. The medication I must take (pregnancy category d) has increased chances of a child being born with extreme birth defects (including head or facial deformities, spina bifida, and heart defects, etc). I would love to have a child, but I am not willing to sentence a child to this hardship and abuse. I am lucky that I have not had to make this difficult decision, but I know that there are many women out there that have had to and suffer with that decision for years upon years. So, in your terms; “the second has “something” inside of her that she can dispose of, without any consequence.”, is absolutely false.

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