French National Assembly Approves Constitutional Guarantee for Abortion

    French National Assembly Approves Constitutional Guarantee for Abortion
    Photo: Franck Prevel/Stringer/Getty Images News via Getty Images

    The Facts

    • France's National Assembly approved a government bill to enshrine a "guaranteed freedom" for women to access "voluntary termination of pregnancy" in the country's constitution after an hours-long debate on Wednesday night, with a solemn vote scheduled for Jan. 30 still due before the issue advances to the Senate.

    • The constitutional amendment to Article 34 received broad support from the ruling coalition, left-wing lawmakers, and the centrist LIOT coalition, passing with 99 votes to 13, as four right-wing legislators — two from Les Républicans (LR) and two from the National Rally — also voted in favor of the bill.

    The Spin

    Left narrative

    If there was still any doubt that abortion must be enshrined in the French Constitution, the so-called personal opinion of Larcher stressed the need to constitutionalize the issue. Though the nation overwhelmingly supports the right to have access to abortion, this is far from being a guarantee, as some right-wing high-ranking officials in France insist on denying women their freedom.

    Right narrative

    On top of the outrageous nature of turning an act that used to be a crime into a constitutional right, this move would also have catastrophic legal consequences when in conflict with other rights. The left isn't attempting to interpret the constitution as including a right to abortion but is trying to reform it — a strong-arm tactic used only by one country: Yugoslavia under the socialist and criminal regime of Tito. Is this the example that France wants to follow?

    Nerd narrative

    There's an 11% chance that Emmanuel Macron will dissolve the French National Assembly before the end of his term, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

    Political split



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