Decisions of the 

Broadcasting Complaints Commission 

(Selected items) 

Y/e 31 March


(Ed. note: Emphasis and paragraph numbering added)

5.1 1995: Political Party Broadcasts - Divorce Referendum

5.2 1995: Referendum Coverage by RTE

5.3 20 June 1996: "Finnucane" Programme

5.4 November 1996: Uncontested broadcasts during the 
campaign before the referendum on Bail

5.5 5 March 1997: Pro-Life announcement

      5. 1

      Programme: Political Party Broadcasts - Divorce referendum 

      Complaint made by Mr O'Driscoll 

      Summary of Complaint : 

      Mr O'Driscoll complained that in the week before the Divorce Referendum, RTE gave uncontested broadcast time on a dual political party cum Yes/No basis. This resulted in the allocation of 40 minutes uncontested time to the Yes side and 10 minutes to the No side. A repeat of a Yes broadcast, stated to be unscheduled and "entirely accidental" gave a further 2.1/2 minutes to that side. Mr O'Driscoll further stated that RTE was legally "entitled to make the broadcasts". However Mr O'Driscoll stated that the "entitlement" notwithstanding, RTE had not dealt with the matter in an even handed way. The fact remains that 42.1/2 minutes was allocated to the Yes side and 10 minutes to the No side. Mr O'Driscoll stated that RTE was in breach of Section 18 of the Broadcasting Act. 

      Stations response:

      RTE in its response stated that the High Court action initiated by the Anti-Divorce Campaign Ltd. and P Kenny against RTE had been adjudicated upon. The action challenged the matter of RTE's allocation of Political Party Broadcasts during the referendum campaign, two elements of the judgement stated that: 

      (a) RTE, having regard to its statutory obligations, was entitled to allocate time for political party broadcasts at that time without being required to have regard to the content of the views expressed therein. 

      (b) to allow the Authority to permit the broadcast by political parties to enable them to put forward their views on the referendum debate to members of the public was not an interference with the democratic process; rather it was an advancement of the democratic process

      RTE stated that there had been no change of policy by them in relation to the allocation of PPBs during referenda. RTE also stated that it allocated PPBs to political parties in accordance with normal policy in relation to both the Abortion Referendum in November 1992, and also in the context of the European Union Referendum (Maastricht Agreement) in June of the same year. 

      RTE stated that Political Party Broadcasts represented around 2% of the total amount of time dedicated to RTE's coverage of the Referendum issues. RTE also stated that they allocated equal airtime to the two campaign groups on the Pro-side and two campaign groups on the Anti-side of the referendum issue. RTE was satisfied that it could not be construed that the broadcasts complained of represented any breach by it of its statutory obligations under the Broadcasting Authority Acts. 

      Decision of the Commission:

      Section 18(2) of the Broadcasting Authority Act, 1960 stated that: "Nothing in this section shall prevent the Authority from transmitting political party broadcasts". 
      This section allows RTE to allocate time for political party broadcasts, which it did in relation to the Divorce Referendum. The Commission stated that RTE did not breach its statutory obligations. The Commission dismissed this part of the complaint

      However in broadcasting the second transmission of a broadcast by the Right to Re-Marry group (which was not a party political broadcast) RTE did breach its statutory obligations. They failed to counterbalance this broadcast by either giving a repeat facility to the opposing side or in some other way address the imbalance. The Commission upheld this part of the Complaint

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      Program : Referendum Coverage by RTE Date: 1995 

      Summary of Complaint : 

      Mr O'Driscoll complained that on occasions, RTE, in broadcasting programmes of current affairs relating to the Divorce Referendum, failed to be fair to all interests concerned, and did not present the broadcast matter in an objective and impartial manner, or without any expression of the views of the Authority. The following are Mr O'Driscoll's observations: 

      1. Late Late Show special on the Catholic Church Oct/Nov 1995

      Mr O'Driscoll stated that the programme consisted of an audience, a panel and Gay Byrne. Almost all of the audience was hostile to the church. Cardinal Daly was brought in to face the audience. Three voices did disassociate themselves from what was going on. Mr O'Driscoll stated that he did not know how the audience or the panel was selected. He also stated that RTE failed to explain why they chose to present this show at the particular point in time, three weeks before the referendum, or why the Catholic Church was the only public institution to undergo this "Analysis" in this particular format. Mr O'Driscoll was of the opinion that this programme did not treat the Cardinal fairly. Mr O'Driscoll did not consider that RTE had selected the matter in an objective manner, nor did RTE present the matter in an impartial manner. This selection and treatment was, in Mr O'Driscoll's view, designed to further the undermining of the Catholic Church, the only major institution opposing Divorce, with a view to promoting a Yes vote.

      2. Late Late Show special on Divorce

      Mr O'Driscoll stated that this show was not seen by himself, but he believed that it was not fair to either side. 

      3. 23 Nov Radio Tammy Wynnette song

      Mr O'Driscoll stated that in his view treating Divorce in a light hearted way was intended to increase its acceptability. 

      4.Oct /Nov TV Questions and Answers

      Mr O'Driscoll stated that the absence of a balanced panel in the months proceeding the referendum was in his view intended to ensure unequal treatment with a view to promoting a Yes vote. Mr Bowman's treatment of these programmes had been lacking in impartiality, and not without expression of the Authority's/broadcasters own views. 

      5. 25 Nov TV J Bowman "Bad News from Longford" C Bird: "I think we've won"

      Mr O'Driscoll stated that these remarks though occurring after the referendum were evidence of bias of two presenters. He also could not see how these remarks were without expression of the Authority's own views. 

      6. 22nd Nov Radio David Hanley

      Mr O'Driscoll asked if Mr Hanley's participation on the Yes side was without expression of the Authority's broadcasting own views. RTE replied that Mr Hanley's robust style of interviewing was well known to listeners, and that, in effect both interviewees were well able to handle the exchanges themselves. Mr O'Driscoll then quotes from the Sunday Independent of 3 December : "He (David Hanley) lost the run of himself entirely. After ten minutes or so, it became clear that William had poor Mervyn in a head-lock, so David abandoned his position as referee to row in, unashamedly, on the side of Mr Taylor", and asks the question was the item on the programme "Without expression of the Authority's own views?" 

      7.12 Nov TV: Would you believe? 

      In Mr O'Driscoll's view the message from this programme was "Catholics may vote "Yes". There was no balancing programme that Mr O'Driscoll was aware of that challenged these shallow views of what is meant to be a Catholic, or to present the picture from an anti-divorce perspective. 

      8. 27 November TV 9 pm News

      Mr O' Driscoll asks if this portrayal is entirely without expression of the Authority's own views. 

      9. Letter to Gay Byrne Show

      This letter was passed onto the Divorce referendum Steering group but not published on the Gay Byrne Show. 

      10. The Steering Group

      Mr O'Driscoll asked for information on this group, but only some of the information was made available. He stated that no register of interests exists for members of the group. 

      Mr O'Driscoll's reason for making this complaint was that several broadcasters mentioned and/or the Authority had breached Section 18(1)(b) except for item 8 above, which falls under Section 18(1)(a), and in so doing in most cases cited above, had endeavoured to influence public opinion in voting in a particular direction in the Divorce Referendum of 24th November 1995. An ethos of impartiality did not, in Mr O'Driscoll's view exist, because the Authority had failed to establish the necessary structures and procedures. The lack of open-ness about the Steering Group was partial evidence of this. 

      Stations Response : 

      RTE in its response stated that the gist of Mr O'Driscoll's complaint was that in some of its programmes broadcast during the course of the Divorce Referendum in 1995, RTE was in breach of its statutory obligations under the Broadcasting Authority Acts. RTE also stated that Mr O'Driscoll's complaint had been the subject of extensive correspondence between RTE and the complainant. The procedures which RTE puts in place to supervise its broadcast coverage of elections and referenda and to ensure that its meets its statutory obligations are that setup since the 1997 (sic) General Election.

      The Steering Group structure and procedures have been developed to plan, supervise and monitor all election and referendum coverage in an effective manner and to ensure that RTE discharges its statutory obligations in a way that would be expected by its audience from the national broadcaster. 

      To the individual programmes mentioned in Mr O'Driscoll's complaint RTE responded as follows; 

      1. The Late Late Show

      RTE stated that the Late Late Show special on the Catholic Church was . The majority of participants were active and committed members of the Church including bishops, priests, nuns, theologians and lay people. The issue of divorce was not on the agenda, RTE rejected the allegation that the intention was to undermine the Church and thus promote a yes "Vote". 

      2. The Late Late Show discussion on Divorce

      The format was a married couple against divorce and a separated couple in favour of divorce. Audience participation was balanced 50/50 and a RTE believes the programme segment debated the matter in an even-handed way which was fair to both sides. 

      3. Tammy Wynette's Song Divorce

      This was a light-heated item and was not, in RTE's view, perceived as being "Partisan or sublimal" by Radio listeners

      4. Questions and Answers

      Two editions of the programme in November were devoted solely to the divorce issue. On these programmes, the panel was balanced 50/50. On the other programmes which dealt with a variety of topics, the normal balance of opinion in Dail Eireann was observed. The format of the programme is that the Chairman elicit responses from the panel members and at times, may provoke a member to respond. The Chairman's use of an advertisement regarding the raising of funds in the USA by one side was an entirely legitimate approach in the context of the programme. RTE believed that Mr Bowman carried out his role in a most professional manner during the campaign period. RTE refuted the allegation that it did not address the effects of divorce. For example, Primetime (5 Oct) dealt with divorce and children, Marketplace (18 Nov) covered the cost of divorce and Primetime(14 Nov) carried a report on the Family Law Courts. 

      5. Referendum Count Programmes 

      RTE found no record of John Bowman saying "we have bad news from Longford" in the count programme. Any such reference would clearly have been in the context of bad news from the perspective of supporters of divorce in Longford. In a six hour programme, it was possible that the comments made by presenters would, if taken out of context, appear to be one-sided. RTE believed that its presenters were fair to both sides during the count programmes. 

      6. 22nd November Mr David Hanley

      RTE stated that Mr Hanley's robust style of interviewing is well known to listeners. He chaired a debate on Morning Ireland with professor William Binchy and Minister Mervyn Taylor. The exchanges were direct but both interviewees are experienced and articulate debaters and engaged skilfully in the exchanges. RTE also stated that there appeared to have been a misunderstanding about the status of Mr O'Driscoll's letter of 20 November last which elicited a reply from Mr Tony Fahy, Secretary Divorce Referendum Steering Group. This letter was intended as a contribution to the letters slot in the Gay Byrne Show. 

      The Elections Steering Group

      RTE stated that this group was set up by the Director General and its proceedings are always chaired by a senior officer of the Authority. During the Divorce Referendum it was chaired by the Director of Radio Programming. The other personnel on the Group during the Divorce Referendum included the Assistant Director General, the Editor of Current Affairs, Television, the Managing Editor of Information programmes, Radio, the News Editor, an Ceannaire Raidio Na Gaeltachta, the Group Secretary and support staff as required to implement programme planning in the programmes concerned across the RTE services. The group met regularly before and during the campaign period to ensure fairness across all RTE's programming. At each meeting programmes were reviewed and representations from political parties, pro and anti groups and other interested parties were considered. The Steering Group mechanism worked along with the normal ongoing editorial committees of RTE. RTE's public affairs programming comes up for scrutiny at election and referendum times. Court challenges have been made in the past alleging unfairness in one way or another and RTE stated that the courts have not found in favour of the complainant. RTE stated that the Steering Group was satisified that it discharged its role carefully and effectively. RTE rejected the charge that its coverage was in any way partisan in such an important national debate and constitutional matter. 

      Decision of the Commission:

      The Commission listened to and viewed the programmes at length. They also considered all submissions made by the parties. They found no breach of the Broadcasting legislation in any of following programmes e.g.: the Late Late Show, Oct/Nov, the Late Late Show on Divorce Oct/Nov, Questions and Answers Oct/Nov, the programme 'Would You Believe' 12th November 1995, 9 O'Clock News 27 November 1995. The Commission dismissed this part of the complaint

      With regard to the programme Morning Ireland, 22/11/95, the Commission were of the opinion that Mr Hanley was not fair to all interests concerned. The Commission found that the programme was not presented in an objective and impartial manner and without expression of the Authority's own views. The Commission upheld this part of the complaint

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      Station: RTE I 

      Programme: "Finnucane" Date: 20 June 1996

      Complaint made by Mr McManus 

      Summary of Complaint: 

      Mr Manus's complaint related to the programme "Finnucane" broadcast on 20th June 1996 on RTE. The complaint related to two insulting telephone calls directed to the Archbishop of Armagh. Mr Manus stated that the calls were insulting to the Pope, the Archbishop who was being interviewed and the Catholic population. Mr Mc Manus requested the Commission to examine the contents of the telephone calls. Mr Mc Manus made his complaint under Section 18(b) of the Broadcasting Acts. 

      Stations Response:

      RTE in its response stated that the interview between Marian Finucane and the coadjutor Archbishop of Armagh, Sean Brady, was, in the context of the series, a lengthy interview lasting some thirty five minutes. The interview was broad and wide ranging in content during which quite an array of subject matters and quite a number of issues were discussed and aired, the intention of the interview being to reveal something of the man and the cleric who is to take over from Cardinal Cathal Daly on his resignation. 

      The interview touched on the Archbishop's Cavan roots, his education, his years in the Irish College in Rome, latterly as vice-rector and rector, and his return to the Diocese of Kilmore. The Archbishop gave his views on the Church since Vatican 2, the decline in church attendance, his own faith, clerical celibacy, women priests, the present Pope, the divorce referendum, Northern Ireland and the recent scandals within the Church. 

      The "Finnucane" programme is a series that trades on access, providing the public the opportunity to question guests, on-air, on issues relevant to the subject being discussed. Incoming phone calls are rigorously monitored by the production team. RTE have reviewed the phone calls logged by the programme that evening and noted that most of them were critical of the Church. They referred among other things to mixed marriages, education, the church and politics, scandals and hypocrisy. 

      The two callers that were put on air with questions to the Archbishop were representative of the views that were being received that evening and were expressing concerns that had been articulated in the media and by the public for some time before the programme. The issues of the scandals within the church from Bishop Eamonn Casey to Fr Brendan Smith to Fr Michael Cleary and the issue of the church's role in Northern Ireland are issues of legitimate public concern that Archbishop Brady would have views on and would wish those views to be known. RTE did not agree that the telephone calls were insulting to the Archbishop, who given his credentials is well capable of defending his position on such matters. Marian Finucane is a broadcaster of many years experience in such interviews and has an obligation to observe that all interviews are objective, impartial and fair to all interests and in RTE's view, by allowing the Archbishop a right of reply in both cases was true to those principals

      The Archbishop in agreeing to appear on the programme was familiar with the format, was fully briefed with the general areas for discussion and was aware of the risks of accepting questions live on air. 

      However, RTE did admit that the second caller showed a distinct lack of respect for the cloth in Addressing the Archbishop as Mr Brady and had the production team been aware that this impoliteness was to happen, would not have allowed the caller further access. 

      RTE was satisfied that it could not reasonably be construed that its broadcast of this programme represented any breach by it of its statutory obligations . 

      Decision of the Commission:

      While the Commission accept that the telephone caller's comments might be regarded as being insulting to the Archbishop, they found no breach of the broadcasting legislation on the part of RTE, 

      The Commission dismissed the complaint

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      Station : RTE 
      Program: "Uncontested Broadcasts during the Campaign before the Referendum on bail" 

      Complaint made by Ms McKenna 

      Summary of Complaint : 

      1.  Ms McKenna's complaint related to the 15 minutes of television broadcast time in total given to political parties urging a yes vote in the referendum on bail and 5 minutes of television broadcast time to the Right to Bail Campaign, which urged a No vote. Ms McKenna's assistant was told by RTE that the running order for broadcasts had been decided on the basis of "lesser order of importance", starting with a two and a half minute broadcast for the Right to Bail campaign on November 20th and ending with a three and a half minute broadcast by Fine Gael (as the largest party in the Government) on November 26th. Ms McKenna stated that such an allocation, which weighed heavily in favour of those campaigning for a yes vote, was unfair, undemocratic and in contravention of RTE's obligation under the broadcasting acts. 

      2.  Ms McKenna referred to Section 4 of the 1976 Broadcasting Authority (Amendment) Act in which the RTE Authority is to ensure that in its programming it shall "uphold the democratic values enshrined in the constitution, especially those relating to rightful liberty of expression". Ms McKenna also referred to Section 18(1) of the 1960 Broadcasting Act requiring RTE to "ensure that the broadcast treatment of current affairs, including matters which are either of public controversy or the subject of current political debate, is fair to all interests concerned and that the broadcast matter is presented in an objective and impartial manner and without expression of the Authority's own views". 

      3.  The question of how State authorities should behave in referenda campaigns was addressed by the Supreme Court in the ruling of the McKenna case in 1995. That stated that public resources should not be used to fund a referendum campaign of a partisan nature. 

      The Supreme Court found that such a use of public funds infringed upon at least three constitutional rights: the right to equality, the right to freedom of expression and the right to a democratic process in referendum

      4.  Ms McKenna stated that although that ruling related to a Government's (and not RTE'S) behaviour in a referendum campaign, RTE should have taken it into account in its allocation of broadcasts for the bail referendum. As the state's national broadcasting service, which uses public resources, RTE has a duty under the Broadcasting Acts to ensure fairness in coverage of current affairs and to ensure that the democratic principles enshrined in the Constitution are upheld.

      The Supreme Court ruling in the McKenna case was the most recent statement interpreting the public's Constitutional rights as they relate to a referendum campaign and Ms McKenna's believes that the principles stated in it therefore apply to RTE and its obligations to be fair and democratic.

      5.  Ms McKenna further stated that RTE was not fair to all interests when one considers that those advocating a Yes vote were given three times as much air time for uncontested television broadcasts as those advocating a No vote

      6.  With regard to Section 18(2) of the Broadcasting Act, which provides for the transmission of party political broadcasts Ms McKenna believed that that provision relates to the allocation of broadcasts for elections, where voters are being given an opportunity to vote for candidates, most of whom are representing political parties, rather than referenda, where the voters are asked to chose between two options - to "Yes" or " no" to an amendment to the Constitution.

      7.  Ms Mc Kenna also stated that RTE decided not to allocate a broadcast to the Green party because it did not have sufficient Dail representation.

      8.  In the bail referendum the Greens were the only political party with Dail representation advocating a No vote but this was not taken into account by RTE. 

      RTE granted two "special broadcasts" to the "Right to Bail Campaign, which is a non-party group with no Dail representation and one each to the five Dail parties urging a Yes vote but none to the Greens

      9.  Ms Mc Kenna also stated that the same type of unfairness was shown in other referenda campaigns

      In the divorce referendum the airtime allocated for broadcasts for the Yes side was four times higher that that allocated to the No side, while ten broadcasts were allocated to the Yes side and two to the No side in both the 1987 referendum on the Single European Act and the 1992 referendum on the Maastricht Treaty

      Stations Response:

      1.  RTE in its response stated that this complaint refers, in essence, to the allocation by RTE of Political Party Broadcasts in the context of the Bail Referendum on 28th November.

      2.  The presentation of Referendum Broadcasts in November '96 gave greater proportion of special broadcasts to the Right to Bail Campaign (it being the only group to which such broadcasts were allocated) than had been given to those opposing the proposal to amend the Constitution in relation to divorce in 1995

      3.  RTE also stated that it takes its responsibility imposed on it by the Broadcasting Authority Acts very seriously. The obligations placed on RTE to be fair, objective and impartial are the guiding principles which govern all their output in relation to news and current affairs. These obligations are given greater significance when they cover matters of public debate and controversy such as elections and referenda. 

      4.  RTE further stated that in all those radio and television programmes on the bail referendum over which RTE has full editorial control and responsibility and which constitute the bulk of its programming on the bail issue, RTE operates an even handed approach to the programme structures, the panel and the audience where there are panels and audience participation. This has been the RTE approach to referenda for many years.

      5.  The question of Political Party Broadcasts was raised last November in the context of the Divorce Referendum in the case taken in the High Court by the Anti-Divorce Campaign against RTE. The McKenna Judgement of the Supreme Court was alluded to in the High Court Judgement but the independence of the RTE Authority was also noted. 

      6.  RTE stated that it does take account of those broadcasts over which it has no editorial control under the Broadcasting Acts. RTE also referred to section 18(2) of the 1960 Act which provides for the transmission of Political Party Broadcasts. 

      Having assessed the situation, the Steering Group awarded five broadcasts to the qualifying Dail parties and two broadcasts to the Right to Bail Campaign, a group opposed to the amendment. The steering Group deemed that its allocation of PPB's and Special Broadcasts was fair to all interests concerned taking account of all of the circumstances

      Decision of the Commission:

      1.  Section 18(2) of the Broadcasting Authority Act, 1960 states that: 
      "Nothing in this section shall prevent the Authority from transmitting Political Party broadcasts". 

      This section allows RTE to allocate time for Political Party Broadcasts, which it did in relation to the Bail referendum.

      2.  The Commission found that RTE did not breach it's statutory obligations under section 18(2) of the 1960 Broadcasting Act as amended. 

      The Commission dismissed the complaint

      End of decision.

      Comments by Editor:

      1.  This was a disgraceful decision by RTE. 

      2.  In the Divorce referendum case, RTE's starting point was the political parties (per Mr Justice Carney).  In the Bail referendum, that starting point is abandoned.

      So what was the rationale in this case?  It is not to be found in RTE's statement of their case above.  All that says is that this is what was decided, it being deemed to be fair "taking account of all the circumstances".  And the BCC's decision throws no light on the subject.

      It is only Ms McKenna's statement, at para 7,  that 
      a reason is suggested - "insufficient Dail representation".  If this reason was given to Ms Mckenna, one would like to know what the legal basis of it is, because it it not to be found in s.18 (2) of the Act, which deals with such broadcasts. 

      3.  In the light of the decision in the Coughlan case,  the Green Party should seek a review of this decision.

      Further comment added 15 May 2000:

      4.  Muintir na hÉireann, a registered political party with an elected public representative, was also denied access to uncontested PPB's, as well as to contested broadcasts.  See "Allocation of free broadcasts by RTE". 

      5.  This referendum opens up the way to the effective abolition of  the right to bail, and with it, the right to a presumption of innocence.

      A new detention centre has now been opened at Cloverhill.  It will hold some 500 people who have not been convicted of anything, and in conditions  believed to be more congested and rigourous than normal prisons.

      6.  A person can now be jailed on the basis of a charge being made. 

      Had the Bail Act been in operation, it is more that likely that, given the media hype, Nora Wall and Paul McCabe would have spent the last three years in jail, simply on the basis of the seriousness of the charge.

      7.  For "serious offences" only? 

      Not quite.  Some minor offences, currently carrying  a maximum sentence of six-months, are  included.  Also, there is little to stop any given offence being re-classified. 

      8.  The referendum permits detention without trial for what is commonly known as "passive resistance"
      ("resisting or wilfully obstructing a peace officer..or a person assisting a peace officer." (S.19.3 of the Public Order Act, 1994)).

      Many believe this is the real purpose of both the Public Order Act and the Bail abolition - to outlaw public protest. 

      Huxley, in Brave New World Revisited, says "The society described in Brave New World is a world-state in which war has been eliminated and where the first aim of the rulers is at all cost to keep their subjects from making trouble." 


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      Station : RTE I 

      Program: News Date: 5/3/97 

      Complaint made by Mr Ellis 

      Summary of Complaint : 

      Mr Ellis complained about a news item on the 1 pm News on 5th March 1997. The item was about the US anti-abortion campaign and Mr Ellis stated that this item was shown immediately after the Irish Pro-Life announcement and was intended to show the Irish announcement in a bad light. Mr Ellis stated that the violent US item was out of date. Mr Ellis made his complaint under Section 18(a) of the Broadcasting Acts. 

      Stations Response : 

      RTE in its response stated that on March 5th the Pro Life movement launched a new wording for a proposed amendment on abortion. The One O'clock news featured pictures from the news conference announcing the new wording and a live three minute interview with Professor William Binchy from the launch. RTE further stated that because the abortion issue had again come into prominence their Washington Correspondent had been asked to prepare a feature on the continuing argument on abortion in the United States 25 years after its introduction there. 

      RTE stated that the item was a comprehensive report on the issue. It opened with a prayer meeting outside an abortion clinic and featured an interview with one of those engaged in what is called side-walk counselling. It did recall the bombing in Atlanta, an event which had made world headlines. To exclude such an element would have rendered the report totally unbalanced. It also featured an interview with an abortion clinic director on the security aspects of the violent campaign and an interview with a pro-life activist rejecting violent methods and making the point that such activity made their position more difficult. RTE further stated that the report was a balanced and comprehensive look and the current state of the debate as was happening in the United States and in no way discredited the interview with Professor Binchy. 

      Decision of the Commission : 

      The Commission rejected the complaint as the news feature was not considered to be deliberately biased and it was not intended to reflect adversely on the Irish announcement. The Commission was of the view that the news feature was presented objectively and impartially.