C: Via Facebook

SDLP candidate telling pro-life voters to ‘get a life’ leads to apology 

A SDLP representative who complained that voters were ‘never-ending’ in quizzing her about support for abortion, and fumed that they needed to ‘get a life’ has now 

MLA for Foyle Sinéad McLaughlin said that she wanted abortion ‘normalised’ and that the current policy was ‘not as far as I want it to be’.

Critics of the imposition of abortion on Northern Ireland by the British Parliament at Westminster have said that the current regime supports abortion to birth in cases of

“I’m sick of going around doors and listening to this never-ending ‘what’s your position’ around abortion .. 2022, go and get a life,” she told a SDLP meeting on Zoom.

Her comments were widely shared on social media with tens of thousands watching the video across a variety of platforms.

“Sinéad McLaughlin SDLP says she’s sick of being asked by potential voters whilst knocking on their doors about her position on abortion (she wants to see abortion normalized). In fact she suggests voters who dare to ask such questions should ‘go and get a life’. Lovely,” wrote Rosemary McGlone, the Aontú candidate for South Down.

Declan McGuinness, brother of the former Sinn Féin leader, Martin McGuinness, said that McLaughlin’s views were a “two fingers up” to Derry voters from the SDLP.

 

Pro-life group Precious Life shared Ms McLaughlin’s remarks and urged pro-life voters to “strategically use the transfer voting system to ensure only pro-life candidates are elected.”

“People on doorsteps: What’s your view on the elective killing of tiny humans?  SDLP: It’s 2022, get a life,” observed one popular account on Twitter.

Acknowledging the “attention” her remarks had garnered, Ms McLaughlin issued an apology for her “poor choice of words and for the offence that this has obviously caused.”

In a Facebook post she said: “Given the attention it has generated and the clips circulating online I just wanted to clarify the comments I made at a hustings event last week.”
Insisting that she was “unashamedly pro-choice”, she said that: “upon rewatching the footage, I think that my choice of words in the moment did not reflect the point that I was trying to make. So, for clarity, while I am pro-choice and have a deep conviction on this matter, I do not in any way want to disparage or denigrate those who, for their own reasons and with their own experience, hold a differing view.”

Her apology was seen as political expediency by some.

 

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