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Late Late Show

Here's what people on Twitter were saying about last night's referendum debate on the Late Late Show

It was a fairly tense evening.

late-late-new-set-03-1024x683 RTÉ RTÉ

LAST NIGHT, THE first televised debate on the referendum to repeal the Eighth Amendment took place on The Late Late Show.

Dr. Peter Boylan, the former Master of the National Maternity Hospital in Holles Street was representing the ‘Yes’ side, with the support of general practitioner Dr. Mary Favier.

On the ‘No’ side, were broadcaster Wendy Grace and Love Both spokeswoman Caroline Simons.

Dr. Peter Boylan opened by saying:

The vote on May 25th is not a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’ vote to introduce abortion, because it’s already here. In the last year alone, almost 2,000 women imported illegal abortion pills from online providers. These pills are very safe when used under medical supervision.
However, if taken in the wrong dosage, or at the wrong time, they can cause serious – potential fatal – problems, such as uterine rupture and haemorrhage. This means that, in effect, we now have backstreet abortion here in Ireland.

If the video won’t play, click here.

On the ‘No’ side, Wendy Grace opened by saying:

Ireland is one of the safest places in the world to be pregnant. We’re voting to legalise the abortion of healthy babies, of healthy mothers.

She spoke about her experience during pregnancy and said that at 22 days she saw her baby “jumping around” on the ultrasound scan. (More to follow when RTÉ provide clips of the debate on social media and the RTÉ Player).

Once the debate kicked off, Twitter was flooded with tweets about the show.

Síle Seoige was impressed by Dr. Peter Boylan’s performance on the debate.

 People were unsure if the debate was correctly balanced.

Peter Sean Gillis / Twitter Sean Gillis / Twitter / Twitter

 But pro-life campaigners think that Wendy and Caroline did a good job, regardless.

Ryan allowed members of the audience to tell their stories about their experiences with abortion.

Tracey Smith, whose daughter Grace had a fatal foetal abnormality, bravely told the story of how she had to travel to Liverpool for an abortion.Tracey was told that Grace had a condition which meant that her lungs wouldn’t grow inside of her ribcage, and was waiting weeks for an appointment in Liverpool.

I was treated so well in Liverpool. It was the first time I was told that I was doing the right thing.
I should have been planning to deliver Grace, if that was my decision. I shouldn’t have had to plan all of the details of travelling to Liverpool.
We had to leave Grace behind for the funeral. We couldn’t afford to go back for the funeral. I got a tracking number from the hospital so I knew when she was coming home.

If the video won’t play, click here.

PastedImage-11399 Dearbhla / Twitter Dearbhla / Twitter / Twitter

Viewers found it difficult to listen to Tracey’s heartbreaking story.

PastedImage-26171 Siobhán de Paor Siobhán de Paor

PastedImage-34281 Evie / Twitter Evie / Twitter / Twitter

PastedImage-50217 Sarah Lennon / Twitter Sarah Lennon / Twitter / Twitter

Even the people in the live audience were struggling to hold back their tears.

An audience member on the ‘No’ side, Mary Kenny, shared her story about an unplanned pregnancy.

Mary told The Late Late Show that she became pregnancy unexpectedly when she was 19, and had never pictured herself as a mother. She said that she had considered abortion, but a co-worker’s words of support changed her mind.

At present, over 16,000 tweets using the hashtag LateLate have been posted since last night’s show. Even this morning, tweets about the debate continue to flood in.


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