IVG in the Constitution: finally, LR agrees for its registration?

IVG in the Constitution finally LR agrees for its registration

The text on the inclusion in the Constitution of the right to abortion will be examined in Committee from this Wednesday. An examination which promises to be disputed and very different from the plebiscite received in the National Assembly at the end of January.

This Wednesday, the registration of the voluntary termination of pregnancy (IVG) in the Constitution enters a delicate parliamentary phase after the very broad adoption of the government project in the National Assembly. In the Law Committee, the right announced “not to oppose it” as indicated by the senator attached to the Les Républicains group, Agnès Canayer. This desire could, however, face a certain hostility from the party’s leaders.

Bruno Retailleau (LR) will leave the choice to his members

In February 2023, the Senate approved a text enshrining in the Constitution the “freedom” of women to “end her pregnancy”. A first step towards abortion? Hard to say because the notion of “guarantee” is never mentioned. Furthermore, the party bosses do not really seem to be in favor of including abortion in the Constitution. Notably Bruno Retailleau, president of the Les Républicains au Sénate group and Gérard Larcher, president of the Senate. The latter recently judged that abortion was “not threatened” in France and that the Constitution was “not a catalog of social and societal rights.

On the other hand, freedom will remain the key word at LR. Indeed, Bruno Retailleau will not impose “a political line on its members” he told AFP. Responsibility and personal conscience are also advocated by the leader of the centrists, Hervé Marseille, who intends to leave “total freedom” to his women and men. He is personally opposed to it but says that “it will eventually pass”. In addition, no amendment should be tabled at the committee stage by Les Républicains, “the right preferring to reserve its possible proposals for February 28” indicates Le Parisien. So, doubt remains in the ranks of the right left to its own devices, and could make it possible to open the debate if a majority emerges among the 348 senators in the hemicycle.

February 28, 2024: start of examination in plenary session in the Senate

As it stands, there is nothing to ensure or refute approval of the text. The examination in the Senate will begin in public session on February 28. Mainly represented by an alliance of the right and the center, the upper house has no other choice but to agree if it wishes to open the door to a Congress bringing together all parliamentarians. The date of the Congress is set for March 5, 2024 but remains on hold for the moment. It will depend on the length of the debates in the Senate. If the text reaches Congress, a three-fifths majority will be necessary to validate the constitutional reform on abortion.