They’re not happy campers down at
the Health Department at the moment. Every morning Fr Abbott and his
novitiate, the Rev Pyne, make them do the spiritual exercises of St
Ignatius before they even sharpen their pencils – and he demands
independent advice of a sort not seen since the emperor’s courtiers
congratulated him on his new clothes. Hence an interesting yarn doing
the rounds over the weekend.

Crikey understands that Abbott has
a “below the line” item for Cabinet – a little something not formally
on the agenda. A little something that has to do with abortion –
additional funding for pregnancy counselling and financial incentives
for live births.

We all know the success Abbott had last time he
ventured into this area. He did a little bit of grandstanding over
RU486 and its listing on the Therapeutic Goods Registrar – his
Parliamentary Secretary’s responsibility – and managed to split the
Government from the Cabinet to the backbench. The PM is still cleaning

If the weekend goss is true, it represents a new low in dogma-driven insensitivity from the Health Minister.

don’t just have responsibilities for nine months of pregnancy. They
have bonds and responsibilities for 18 years, until their children
become adults – and beyond.

Women have terminations because they don’t believe they live in the right environment to raise and care for a child.

the Government Abbott is such a prominent member of is making it harder
– particularly for more vulnerable women – to create that environment,
thanks to their welfare-to-work changes.

If the weekend goss is true, Abbott should go see a shrink and stop taking out his own issues on the rest of the community.