Bishop: embryos Bill could hurt Labour in by-election

The highly controversial embryos Bill has cost the Government its “ethical credibility” with voters, a Roman Catholic Bishop has warned ahead of a by-election in East Glasgow.

Bishop Joseph Devine is Scotland’s second most senior Roman Catholic figure.

He has warned that Catholic voters in Glasgow are appalled by the unethical measures contained in the embryos Bill and they may express their displeasure at the ballot box.

The Bill allows for animal-human embryos and ‘saviour siblings’. It also removes a requirement for doctors to consider a child’s need for a father in IVF treatment.

During the passage of the Bill, Gordon Brown failed to support attempts to lower the time limit for abortion.

The Government has delayed the final votes on the embryos Bill until the autumn, blaming scheduling problems.

But observers suggest that the real reason is the Prime Minister’s anxiety over the crucial Glasgow East by-election, which will take place on 24 July.

In a letter to Scottish Labour MPs Bishop Devine said the Government has “lost its ethical credibility in the nation at large” because of the Bill.

“Christian people have not changed. It is Labour that has broken its pact with Christian voters,” he added.

“What are we to do when our religion is attacked and our conscience outraged? When one considers the self-inflicted injuries this Labour Government has visited upon itself, one could be forgiven for thinking it had some kind of death wish.”