Should it be illegal to ‘influence’ a woman seeking an abortion?

Law-making is a funny old business. My move from commentator to legislator has brought with it some poacher-turned-gamekeeper quandaries. While all laws emanate from political choices, unlike my usual stomping ground of activist speeches or polemical articles, there is a danger that legal mis-speaking might end up criminalising people.

I feel the need to ask a series of questions every time a Bill arrives at the House of Lords. Creating new laws increasingly seems to be a substitute for political leadership, so a key question must be: is this Bill really necessary? Is it proportionate? In an unelected part of parliament, is it anti-democratic over-reach to oppose illiberal legislation? How to stay true to one’s principles, without law-making becoming just a virtue-signalling vehicle, with little regard for how the detail will affect citizens’ lives? And finally, what are the consequences (or even unintended consequences) of how the Bill is written? The latter can mean hours of arguments centring on pernickety interpretations of key words. A recent example that has presented me with real dilemmas might illustrate the point…

Read the full article on The Spectator.