In response to a letter from Atheist Ireland, Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore has told today’s Irish Times through a spokesman that he “respected the Constitution and would comply with his constitutional obligations” after receiving legal advice on the religious oath for Council of State members.
This ambiguous statement seems to imply that he will swear the required religious oath when the Council meets this Monday to discuss the proposed abortion legislation.
If he does this, he will become be the first Irish person to swear a Constitutional oath in the presence of a god that he is publicly on record as not believing in.
If he does this, he will perpetuate the idea that swearing an oath means nothing in Ireland as you can do it with a metaphorical wink, and nobody really cares.
He still has time to decide not to swear the oath, and to be seen as a politician of principle who will literally go down in the history books of Irish constitutional law on the issue of freedom of belief and conscience in Irish politics.
If you agree that Eamon Gilmore should not swear this religious oath next Monday, please contact him today and let him know.
Dept of Foreign Affairs 01 4780822
Labour Party Leader’s Office 01 618 3566