"O'Brien is a patron of the Iona Institute, a conservative Catholic pressure group, and appears regularly in the Irish media as a contributor, supporting the teachings of the Catholic Church.In 2015, The Independent reported O'Brien's opinion that gay couples, then prohibited from marrying, should abstain from sex like unmarried straight couples.
In her Irish Times column, she has expressed her opposition to abortion in all circumstances, including rape, incest and fatal foetal abnormality, and to same-sex marriage.
Her stance on civil partnerships has changed. Initially opposed to them in 2008, and 2010 by 2015, in the run up to the Irish marriage equality referendum, she claimed to be in support of them.
Here's what O'Brien said just before the Irish referendum about the funding of the pro-marriage equality opposition:
According to Atlantic, GLEN [The Gay and Lesbian Equality Network] received $4,727,860 between 2005 and 2011.
Yes, four and three quarter million dollars. (Incidentally, GLEN explained to The Irish Times in 2013 that it gets only half its funding from Atlantic.)In 2009, GLEN had 348 media appearances – 179 broadcasts and the rest ranged from national newspapers to the Law Society Gazette. Almost one per day.Let’s not forget Marriage Equality, whose name even ended up on the referendum ballot paper. They got a mere $475,215 from Atlantic....Oh, and the other part of Yes Equality, the Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL)? From 2001 to 2010, it got $7,727,700 and another $3,829,693 in 2010 and 2013....This is not Atlantic Philanthropies funding a hospital or school. This is foreign money being systematically invested to change public opinion, to deliver seamlessly a Yes in a referendum that has enormous consequences for family law for generations.All the while soothing us by spinning it as just “seventeen little words”. Can American money buy an Irish referendum?