Sunday, January 6, 2013

Labor lies nailed | Daily Telegraph Piers Akerman Blog

Labor lies nailed | Daily Telegraph Piers Akerman Blog

Piers Akerman

Monday, January 07, 2013 (7:01am)

THE biggest job the Opposition faces this year is nailing Labor’s lies about leader Tony Abbott.
Principal among these are lies about Abbott’s Catholicism and his views on abortion and IVF.
Abbott’s own chief-of-staff Peta Credlin had a crack at killing these lies at the weekend when she revealed an extraordinarily moving personal story about the assistance her boss had given her when she and her husband were trying to conceive through IVF.

As anyone who has known a couple in an IVF program would understand, it is not an easy procedure, there are no promises, there are a lot of frustrations and there can be no guarantee of success.

Abbott himself had said it was a “myth” that he was against IVF and that in fact he had considered resigning from cabinet over a proposal to limit older women’s access to IVF.

“Perhaps not going ahead with the IVF restrictions was my colleagues’ way of atoning for a decision I deplored,” he wrote in the Sunday Telegraph.

He said he had never opposed IVF. “How could any pro-family politician not encourage people to have children and make it easier for them to do so?”

Abbott also said “contrary to myth, as health minister, I never sought to restrict access to the morning-after pill, never sought to prevent the importation of RU486 and never sought to limit access to abortion”.

That has not stopped Labor’s most senior law officer, Attorney-General Nicola Roxon, from attempting to smear Abbott saying he was “ on record with his views of abortion, his views of RU-486, his views of older women accessing IVF”.

“They’re the sorts of comments that people will judge Mr Abbott on. If he’s changed his view, well then that’s obviously a matter for him to prosecute and see if he can convince the public that he has.”
Abbott’s views remain as sound as they ever were.

Abbott has the same views on abortion on former US President Bill Clinton - that abortion should be safe, legal and rare.

Now senior Opposition figure Christopher Pyne has come forward to talk of the support Abbott provided during a five-year period when Pyne and wife Carolyn were trying to conceive through IVF.
After a long struggle, twins Barnaby and Eleanor were born in August 2000.

“The myth that Tony Abbott is against IVF is just that,” Pyne told The Australian.

“We did the IVF for five years. We had many failed cycles. We had well over a dozen before the twins actually came along.”

Pyne said the government was trying to paint a picture of the Opposition Leader that simply did not bear out the reality.

“I am speaking about it because the myth Labor is creating about Tony is false, unfair and repugnant to me, he said.

“He was always keen to talk about progress.

“We talked about IVF and my twins and the process of getting there many times and he was only ever extraordinarily supportive, often raising the subject and being encouraging, hoping it would all be a great success.

“I remember explicitly talking about the fact that the church at the time was not in favour of IVF. His view was the church’s position was simply misguided and that there was nothing more important or exciting than the birth of children and if IVF could help bear children, then it was a good thing, not bad.”

Pyne said Mr Abbott had strongly opposed cuts to Medicare funding for IVF treatment.

He was against that from the very beginning,” Pyne said.

These personal testimonies will not stop Labor’s propaganda juggernaut but honest Australians should not let the lies persist.

The evidence of Abbott’s good character is abundant. Gillard cannot say the same.

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