The referendum to repeal Ireland's eighth amendment is drawing closer and emotions are running high on both sides of the campaign. Last night, Claire Byrne Live held a debate on the issue with representatives from the yes and no side in studio.
Representing the repeal side was Orla O’Connor - co-director of Together For Yes, Dr. Peter Boylan - chairperson of the Institute of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and Sinn Fein's Mary Lou McDonald.
Advocating to save the eighth amendment were Maria Steen of the Iona Institute, obstetrician John Monaghan and Fianna Fáil TD Mary Butler.
The debate got heated very fast with a rowdy audience cheering and clapping along and many viewers felt that it became more of a circus than any kind of informative debate.
Here's some of the reaction on Twitter:
I'm a mother who had an illegal abortion. I'm a mother who nearly died from my most recent pregnancy. There is not a shred of consideration for us from many on #CBlive from many in studio. I can't even begin to describe the sickening hurt. Think RTE should provide a support line.
— Sinéad Redmond (@sineadredmond) May 14, 2018
My thoughts are with the women in Ireland grappling with a crisis pregnancy or a diagnosis of fatal foetal abnormality and had to watch a crowd whoop and holler against their right to access safe, legal healthcare at home. A profoundly unedifying spectacle. #CBLive
— â? amy o'connor â? (@amyohconnor) May 14, 2018
I have to admit the laughter from some people in the audience tonight when Savita was mentioned on #CBLive was horrific, afford her and her family the dignity and respect in her death that they were all denied during her care in an Irish Hospital #togetherforyes #repealthe8th ðŸ'”
— Ireland / Paula (@ireland) May 14, 2018
I have great respect for Claire Byrne but her team let her down tonight - the show was poorly planned, disorganised & quite frankly like a circus.
— Sen Catherine Noone (@senatornoone) May 14, 2018
I'm highly highly disgusted that this debate involves audience whoops and cheers and back. Clapping led by @MattieMcGrath
This is not a light hearted topic. This is my life... Our lives... Our babies... Our choices...
Walk. In. Our. Heartbroken Shoes.#CBLive @TFMRIRE
— Tracey (@mummakeupbag) May 14, 2018
I was in the audience tonight. Not one ordinary woman affected by the 8th got a chance to speak. The doctors did & lawyers too. The no side treated it like a kind of sick pantomime. It’s our lives, our health on the line yet not one woman hurt by the 8th given a chance. #cblive
— Carly Bailey (@CarlyBee25) May 14, 2018
Make the clapping stop. It's neither the place nor the topic for whooping and hollering. #CBLive
— Kevin Doyle (@KevDoyle_Indo) May 14, 2018
This kind of bear pit debate is exactly what we don’t need when it comes to a deeply private and personal issue that requires care and compassion. Sensationalist assertions flying. #cblive
— Una Mullally (@UnaMullally) May 14, 2018
Whoops + hollering on #CBLive were an affront to women who've had to end a pregnancy. If you were affected by last night's discussion, don't forget Well Woman offers FREE after-abortion counselling, whether immediately after or 20 years on. Men welcome too. @TFMRIRE #repealthe8th
— Dublin Well Woman (@dublinwellwoman) May 15, 2018
Im sorry but the audience of #CBLive, who is a great moderator and host, should be ashamed, the clapping, whooping and point scoring on the issue of abortion is not only unseemly but wholly inappropriate.
— Darren McCaffrey (@DMcCaffreySKY) May 14, 2018
All this is short now is people waving home-made signs and Marty Whelan and it'd be Winning Streak #cblive
— Anthony O'Connor (@Antcon7062) May 14, 2018
— Barbara Scully (@barbarascully) May 14, 2018