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Ireland: 76% of voters support equal marriage

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  1. Thank you Ireland, you are shaming many other countries.

  2. Glad to see the Catholic Church’s stranglehold over morality loosening in Ireland, much as it is in Spain.

    1. GingerlyColors 9 Nov 2013, 8:35am

      And Portugal, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil, Mexico……….

  3. 29% Fianna Fail support is a good thing cause no one will vote for them anyway seeing as they screwed up the country so use the logic of whatever they oppose, Irish majority are more likely to support .

    1. Actually Fianna Fail had 29% saying they were against it. It doesn’t say how many of their supporters were for it, but it’s likely a majority.

      1. 71% of Fianna Fáil voters support gay marriage.

  4. They should legisate equal marriage, not submit it to the popular vote. Subjecting minority rights to the will of the majority is mob rule, not democracy.

    1. Who do you mean by “they”?

    2. The Irish Constitution (1937) seems to actually define marriage as being between a man and a woman (according to a High Court judgement in 2006). Our constitution is strict, it requires a referendum to enact a constitutional amendment; this change cannot be enacted solely by legislation. Fortunately, public opinion seems to be on the side of fairness in this case, and I look forward to being able to vote Yes on this amendment when the time comes.

    3. Wile I agree in principle, this is not the case in law. The Irish Supreme Court cases are the issue. The general legal position is that the Supreme Court has defined marriage as mentioned in the constitution as a man and a woman. As legal precedent, these cannot be ignored. Hence the government need to go to plebiscite. If they didn’t, it would be challenged, and the challenge would most certainly win.

      The case that is the issues is this one:-

      Murray v. Ireland (1985) I.R. 532
      Costello J. in the High Court stated that “the Constitution makes clear that the concept and nature of marriage, which it enshrines, are derived from the Christian notion of a partnership based on an irrevocable personal consent, given by both spouses which establishes a unique and very special life-long relationship.” The implication of this statement would be that, as interpreted in the Constitution, would be restricted to one between two people of the opposite sex.

      1. The view that Murray v Ireland resolves the issue is, I think, very questionable. Firstly the Supreme Court can (I believe) overrule itself. Secondly, the decision itself does arguably leave scope for same-sex marriage. Finally, the comments by Costello J are from the High Court, and can therefore be overruled.

        What is clear is that the Supreme Court is widely _believed_ to have settled this question, and that the decision has been taken by senior activists to pursue a referendum as this will give a decisive result which cannot be subject to legal challenge. It’s also worth pointing out that the relevant clause of the Constitution is problematic for plenty of reasons and any progressive should want it revised, regardless of its effect on LGBT people.

        1. atalanta, I’d recommend you read more about this.. Murray v Ireland is the legal precedent, and the Supreme Court referenced and agreed with the conclusion of case, hence it is now the de facto legal interpretation of Article 41. Its not “widely believed”, but is considered the current legal position as the Supreme Court is tasked with the interpretation the constitution, and they have ruled. A referendum is the only read option to overrule the Supreme Court.

        2. I think the argument that the precedent of the courts do not matter have been fully answered here, Atlanta. I believe you need to inform yourself more on the fundamentals of law, other have taken the time to address this for you, you should read it. I suggest you look up the Supreme Court case where Murray v Ireland was referenced, making a referendum the only option to overturn this.

  5. Those numbers are pretty impressive.

  6. That’s great, but I don’t think basing equality law on popular opinion is a good idea.

    1. Unfortunately the court cases that have interpreted the constitution on the articles on marriage have set precedent, and only a change to the constitution will allow full equality. This can only be done by the people.

  7. Any change to the Irish Constitution requires a referendum of the people. Currently the constitution states the marriage is between a man and a woman to give background. This is a democratic process. The people decide. It will pass overwhelmingly. Obstacle is Catholic Church – don’t really have a leg to stand on in Ireland!

    1. Not quite accurate. The Irish constitution doesn’t state that marriage is between a man and a woman. It only states that marriage has a special position in society and must be protected. It doesn’t state one way or the other what the gender of the participants must be. It seems to be a bit of a stretch to claim that marriage equality would violate the constitutional edict and it’s a HUGE stretch for those who are claiming that it limits marriage to man/woman.

      1. While you are technically correct, and there is some disagreement over this, the Supreme Court cases are the issue. The general legal position is that the Supreme Court has defined marriage as mentioned in the constitution as a man and a woman. As legal precedent, these cannot be ignored. Hence the government need to go to plebiscite. If they didn’t, it would be challenged, and the challenge would most certainly win.

        The case that is the issues is this one:-

        Murray v. Ireland (1985) I.R. 532
        Costello J. in the High Court stated that “the Constitution makes clear that the concept and nature of marriage, which it enshrines, are derived from the Christian notion of a partnership based on an irrevocable personal consent, given by both spouses which establishes a unique and very special life-long relationship.” The implication of this statement would be that, as interpreted in the Constitution, would be restricted to one between two people of the opposite sex.

  8. And yet their neighbours to the North still live in the 19th century!

    1. Being one of their neighbours in the ‘Land to the North’ I would agree with you, but it feels closer to the 18th century.

  9. GingerlyColors 8 Nov 2013, 9:02am

    The idea that human rights issues such as marriage equality should not be put to the popular vote is a valid one. You only have to look to Switzerland where there are an average of four referendums per year on various issues and that country did not grant women the right to vote in federal elections there until 1971, no doubt held back by (male) public opinion in referendums. Liechtenstein did not give women the vote until 1984 when that country’s menfolk voted narrowly (51.3%) in favour of allowing their female counterparts suffrage in a referendum.
    Regardless of the rights or wrongs of a referendum, it is highly unlikely that the Irish people will veto same sex marriage. Although the Catholic Church will organise a major campaign against it they will fail because that church is still discredited due to the recent child abuse scandals and with Catholic countries such as Spain, Portugal and Argentina all having same sex marriages there is no reason why Ireland cannot join the club.

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