Broadcast rules on referendum campaigns may be changed

An Oireachtas committee is examining the possibility of changing rules that require broadcasters to give equal air-time to both sides in a referendum campaign.

At present, all broadcasters are obliged to give coverage on a 50-50 basis to voices from both sides of the argument in the run-up to a referendum.

However, the Oireachtas Committee on the Constitution is now seeking submissions from the public on whether this should be changed.

Fianna Fáil TD Sean Ardagh, who chairs the committee, has denied that the move is a subtle attempt to justify a second referendum on the Lisbon Treaty.

The treaty was rejected by voters in June, despite the fact that all the main political parties were calling for a 'yes' vote.

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