Labor leader Julia Gillard promises she is going to unleash “the real Julia” and no longer be guided by campaign advice and professional or common wisdom and “just go for it” in her election battle against Tony Abbott. But how much of the “real Julia” are we likely to see?
I am indebted to Dr Lachlan Dunjey of Western Australia, an indefatigable supporter of the rights of unborn children, for this item of research on Emily’s List, the pro-abortion feminist faction in the ALP of which Julia Gillard was a co-founder. Emily’s List’s stated objective is to raise money to help “progressive”, i.e., pro-abortion, women get elected to parliament.
According to Jacqueline Kent’s biography, The Making of Julia Gillard (Penguin Viking, 2009), Julia Gillard was not only a founder of Emily’s List but wrote its constitution.
Dr Dunjey reports: “Please note that the news item [see below], which was on the Emily’s List site until approximately two weeks ago when I last used the link, has now ‘disappeared’ when I checked on July 24, 2010.”
(The substance of it was reproduced in EMILY’s Notes, December 2008, page 3, which News Weekly has made available with this article as a downloadable PDF).
Why has this news item been laundered from Emily’s List website? Emily’s Listers were celebrating with glasses of champagne when Victoria’s notorious Abortion Law Reform Bill was passed in 2008, so why the coyness now?
Is it to protect their co-founder, Julia Gillard, whom Emily’s List voted the best performer during the 2004 election campaign? She was then shadow health minister, and Emily’s List have politely overlooked her Medicare Gold Card fiasco.
Emily’s List’s started in 1994 when the ALP national conference passed an affirmative action rule requiring that women be preselected in 35 per cent of winnable seats at all elections by 2002.
Among the “progressive” women who drove this change were Julia Gillard, former Victorian premier Joan Kirner, former WA premier Carmen Lawrence, Helen Creed, Candy Broad, Kay Setches, Leonie Morgan, Judy Spence, Meredith Burgmann, Jan Burnswoods, Carolyn Pickles, Sue Mackay and Fran Bladel.
To be “progressive” a woman has to be pro-abortion, pro-diversity (i.e., increased “rights” for same-sex couples) and pro-institutionalised childcare (with no equivalent funding for mothers who care for their own children), and, of course, pro-affirmative action, i.e., discrimination against men until the numbers of women and men in all jobs and at all levels of promotion reach “equity”.
This is the real agenda of the “real Julia”.
Babette Francis, B.Sc. (Hons), is national coordinator of Endeavour Forum Inc.
Emily’s List website, October 14, 2008 (recently deleted):
“Abortion law reform a momentous occasion for Victorian women”
“EMILY’s List congratulates the Victorian Parliament on the passage of the Abortion Law Reform Bill. We commend the Parliament for harmonising current medical practice, community attitudes and the law. We thank Premier John Brumby, Health Minister Daniel Andrews, and Minister for Women’s Affairs Maxine Morand for their strong leadership and integrity throughout the contentious debate.
“EMILY’s List thanks all of the women, and men, from across the political spectrum, who have worked tirelessly in the community and in the Parliament to make the decriminalisation of abortion a reality. This is an historic moment for the recognition of women’s rights in Victoria.
“We would especially like to thank our pro-choice MPs for their principled stand; their commitment to just and equitable outcomes for all Victorian women, their determination to see the Bill through, their dedication in defeating numerous regressive amendments, and their courage in the face of contemptible tactics from some quarters. We are grateful for their diligence; their thoughtful, measured and articulate contributions to the debate; and their unswerving respect for women and women’s rights.
“EMILY’s List believes that this landmark legislation represents a vital shift in the way that our society respects women’s ability to make sound decisions about their bodies and their lives. This legislation will mean that women in all areas of Victoria will be able to access safe, legal terminations free from persecution; and medical practitioners provide vital reproductive health services to women free from harassment.
“It is our firm belief that the strong and increasing representation of women in the Parliament has made reform to Victoria’s abortion laws possible. Women MPs advocating for the women’s reproductive rights put decriminalisation on the agenda and were instrumental at every stage of Abortion Law Reform Bill’s development. We are especially grateful to Candy Broad MLC for her bravery in putting forward the Private Member’s Bill last year, which set the scene for referral to the Victorian Law Reform Commission, and galvanised the parliamentary process.
“EMILY’s List thanks all of those organisations and individuals who worked so productively together to bring about abortion law reform. We would particularly like to acknowledge former [Victorian] Premier and National Co-Convenor of EMILY’s, Joan Kirner, for her inspirational leadership on this issue.”