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Ireland votes in historic gay marriage poll

Friday, May 22, 2015 - 01:33

Ireland votes on whether to allow gay marriage in a referendum that could make the country the first in the world to adopt the policy by popular vote. Yiming Woo reports.

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Voters in Dublin are deciding on whether to allow gay marriage in a national referendum. If Ireland says yes, it could make the once deeply Catholic country the first in the world to adopt the policy by popular vote. The reform is backed by all political parties and polls say the referendum might be passed by a margin of as much as two-to-one. But it will hinge on whether tens of thousands of younger voters actually turn up. Twenty-two-year-old Samuel Riggs was one of those who did. (SOUNDBITE) (English) VOTER, SAMUEL RIGGS, SAYING: ''I can't conceive of a world where this vote doesn't pass. I just think at any point in history, change which is more progressive, more inclusive, can really help the people of a country. I think this will be great for national mood. It will be great for the inclusivity of LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer) people. I just think it would be positive in general, to have this positive change in Ireland.'' It's hoped that a 'Yes' vote will mark a transformation in the country that decriminalised homosexuality just over 20 years ago. Evana Boyle, speaking for one of the 'No' campaign groups, says children need both a mother and a father. (SOUNDBITE) (English) MOTHERS AND FATHERS MATTER SPOKESPERSON, EVANA BOYLE, SAYING: "We're suddenly saying, you know, men and women are interchangeable. Mums and Dads are interchangeable. I think that's extremely radical. We all know mothers and fathers are different. We're in favour of diversity. We're not trying to say everybody is the same. We need to recognise difference, but that's not discrimination." The results will be announced on Saturday.

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Ireland votes in historic gay marriage poll

Friday, May 22, 2015 - 01:33