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Irish Minister: Don’t take it for granted that same-sex marriage referendum will pass

Nick Duffy January 5, 2015
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The Irish Minister for Justice has warned people not to take it for granted that same-sex marriage will pass an upcoming referendum.

Ireland is set to vote on proposals to introduce civil same-sex marriage in the Spring – with early polls suggesting overwhelming public support for the measure.

However, despite some projections that it will pass by a landslide majority, Ireland’s referenda often have unpredictable results due to a combination of low turnouts and powerful religious lobbying groups.

After the head of the Catholic Church in Ireland called for Catholics to make their voice heard in the referendum, Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald warned that it is possible the measure will suffer a shock defeat.

Ms Fitzgerald told the Irish Times: “I wouldn’t take anything for granted in relation to a referendum on anything (…) referenda have their own momentum in Ireland.

“The actual period of debate is very important. We have experience of support being high and changing, being low and changing.

“The case has to be made, the rationale has to be clearly understood and people have to put their points of view out there.

“This is a topic that elicits a range of views, understandably, but in terms of putting it to the people and changing our Constitution, I believe it will get the support it needs.”

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