‘Anti-democratic’ NI votes under fire

The Chief Whip for the DUP has heavily criticised Westminster MPs for voting to impose abortion and same-sex marriage on Northern Ireland.

Writing for The Belfast Telegraph, Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP called the move “worrying” and “anti-democratic”.

He said the votes challenged the right of Northern Ireland’s people and elected representatives to make their own laws and regulations.

Nothing to celebrate

During committee stage of the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill, MPs voted by 383 to 73 on same-sex marriage and 332 to 99 on abortion.

This week the Bill passed its second reading in the House of Lords without a vote.

Speaking about the votes, Sir Jeffrey said: “The actions of the House of Commons on Tuesday drive a coach and horses through the devolution settlement.

“In fact, for those of us who want an Executive back today, Tuesday’s decisions are nothing to be celebrated.”

‘Stongly pro-life’

Abortion and same-sex marriage laws will come into effect unless a devolved Government is in place in Northern Ireland by 21 October.

But Donaldson reaffirmed: “The DUP remains strongly pro-life and we support the traditional definition of marriage.

“We respect other views and believe the best place to debate these issues is in the NI Assembly, where we can all ensure our laws reflect the particular needs and circumstances of NI.”

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