Burton: Govt to discuss Seanad referendum next week

The Social Protection Minister Joan Burton has said the Government has not discussed the referendum on the abolition of the Seanad in detail yet.

Burton: Govt to discuss Seanad referendum next week

The Social Protection Minister Joan Burton has said the Government has not discussed the referendum on the abolition of the Seanad in detail yet.

Yesterday, the Taoiseach Enda Kenny outlined details of an amendment to the constitution which - if passed - would see the Seanad cease to exist after the next general election.

Labour whip Emmet Stagg is quoted as saying he will vote against the Government's proposals.

Speaking this morning, Minister Burton said the party has not discussed the referendum in detail yet, but she expects Mr Stagg to support the holding of the referendum, though he may choose to vote against the abolition of the Seanad in the ballot box.

She said: "He will be voting to put the referendum to the people, but privately he is inclined to retain the Seanad.

"We haven't had a chance to discuss the Government decision in detail with the parliamentary party and I expect that it will happen next week when the Dáil returns."

John Whelan, Labour Senator and Seanad Spokesperson on Communications and Natural Resources, does not believe there is any political stomach for the abolition of the Seanad.

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