Referendum on the decriminalization of abortion in Portugal in 2007

The referendum on the decriminalization of abortion in Portugal was held on 11 as February as 2007 . The YES won with 59.25% of the votes. 1 It was the fourth referendum , held in the country and the second on the same subject. In the previous one won the NO by narrow difference with 51% of the votes. 2

The referendum allowed legalization of induced abortion in Portugal or voluntary termination of pregnancy until 10 weeks of gestation.

The official results gave a YES victory of 59.25% of the votes for 40.75% of the NO, with a 43.57% participation. 1 There were about 50,000 blank votes and 25,000 voters. With no more than 50% voter turnout, the referendum is not binding, although Prime Minister Jose Socrates of the Socialist Party announced that it would be made parliamentary to respect the verdict of the people. 2 He did succeed in the great urban centers, in Setúbal, Alentejo and Algarve, while he did not triumph in the rural areas of the north and in the islands. 3

Question

The question in the referendum was:

“Do you agree with the decriminalization of voluntary termination of pregnancy, if it is performed, at the option of the woman, in the first ten weeks, in a legally authorized health facility?”

“Do you agree with the decriminalization of voluntary termination of pregnancy if it is performed, at the option of the woman, in the first ten weeks in a legally authorized health establishment?”

Electoral Campaign

Among the six main parties in Portugal, four supported the yes, one abstained and another was against. In favor the ruling Socialist Party , positioned the Left Bloc , the Portuguese Communist Party and the “Os Verdes” Ecologist Party . The Socialist Party announced however that it gave freedom for any affiliate to campaign for no. The first opposition party, the Social Democratic Party, adopted a neutral position, considering it to be a matter of conscience for each voter, but its leader, Luís Marques Mendes , announced that he would vote against it as a “destruction of new lives . 4 They supported the Social Democrat Center / Popular Party and the Catholic Church. The Church stood in spite of the fact that the cardinal patriarch, Jose Policarpo promised that the bishops would not enter into campaign. 5 The bishop of Bragança-Miranda compared abortion with the death penalty, stating that “everyone was horrified at the execution of Saddam. Abortion is just a variant of the death penalty . 6

The polls gave victory to the yes, but those in favor of the decriminalization remembered that in 1998, when the previous referendum was celebrated, the same polls were given and it defeated the no. The prime minister concluded the campaign stating that the election was “between change and modernity or conservatism . For non-reform supporters it was “a wild and complete liberalization” . 7

References

  1. ↑ Jump to:a b «Election results 11-02-2007» . CNE . Accessed January 21, 2016 .
  2. ↑ Jump to:a b Miguel Mora (February 12, 2007). The ‘yes’ draws 18.5 points to the ‘no’ in the referendum on abortion in Portugal . The country.
  3. Back to top↑ New era in Portugal . The country. February 13, 2007.
  4. Back to top↑ Miguel Mora (January 22, 2007). Portugal decides on the 10 weeks of pregnancy . The country.
  5. Back to top↑ Miguel Mora (January 31, 2007). The ‘no’ gains ground at the beginning of the campaign on abortion in Portugal . The country.
  6. Back to top↑ Miguel Mora (January 16, 2007). The bishop of Bragança equates abortion with the death penalty . The country.
  7. Back to top↑ Miguel Mora (February 10, 2007). Abortion referendum polls in Portugal predict a ‘yes’ victory . The country.