JUST over three million people — 3,167,484 — were entitled to vote on the last constitutional amendment put before the people. However, only 1,240,729 — 39.17% of the electorate — thought it worth their while to exercise the franchise in a referendum that ensured the survival of the Seanad for the immediate future at least.
In the recent British general election, 66.1% of voters took part and upturned opinion poll results and unexpectedly returned a Tory majority.
Today, we have an opportunity to vote on another proposed amendment. All the arguments have been made, all the counterarguments have been advanced. As referendum day approached, opinion polls changed and suggested that a result once imagined a certainty may still be in flux. In the next year or so, we will have an opportunity to vote in a general election too. For the last while, there has been a debate about how we might best mark the centenary of the 1916 Rising. Could there be a better way of remembering it than using the vote it secured for all citizens of this Republic?
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