The Government today, 26th September 2017, agreed an indicative timetable for a number of referendums on constitutional amendments and reforms to local government, arising from the work of the Citizens’ Assembly, the Convention on the Constitution, and the Programme for a Partnership Government:

Referendum on the Eighth amendment – May or June 2018

Referendums on Blasphemy (Article 40.6.1) and “Woman’s life within the home” (Article 41.2.1) – October 2018

Plebiscite on directly elected executive mayors – October 2018

Referendums on Divorce, Extending the Franchise at Presidential Elections to Irish CitizensResident outside the State, and Reducing the voting age to 16, – June 2019


Government Sets Indicative Timetable For Referendums (Merrionstreet)


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82 thoughts on “Nine Months

    1. Toe up

      Do you want women to die needlessly as a result of treatable complications arising from pregnancy?

      “No” would be the correct vote based on that question.

      1. Zuppy International

        Toe up tells an outrageous lie and the comment goes unmolested by moderators.

        Yet anybody using ordinary everyday language to describe the truth inherent in the act of abortion will have their comment immediately rendered into gobbledygook.

        The Broadsheet propaganda bias rolls on.

      1. newsjustin

        Vote yes (on abortion) and there will be far more.

        By the way, anyone interested in seeing the “slippery slope” in action should observe how the requirements for a divorce are being proposed for reduction (5 years to 2). Not a life or death change, but the same will be done for abortion – as is currently being lobbied for in the UK (1 doctor instead of 2, etc).

        1. catsiglierie

          You’re absolutely right. It’s almost as if…I don’t know…society is … in some ways … progressing?

          To equate an increase in the number of abortions to a reduction in the separation time for a divorce is absurd. (On a side note – all divorces are truly wonderful and should be encouraged, as they represent the end of unhappy marriages – Louis CK)

          And here’s the thing – the number of abortions probably will/should increase. As one of the fundamental issues regarding abortion in Ireland is the restriction of access (ie, only those who can afford to travel and pay for the procedure have access to it), then yes, we should be expecting an increase as it will enable the following women to access it:
          – Women from lower socio-economic groups who discover FFA
          – Girls (ie women under 18 and often with no economic independence) who have been the victims of rape or incest
          – The women who become pregnant with no ability to provide for a child (you know, those Commentators on this and similar sites suggest are leeching off the state if they have the temerity to breed)
          – Women with severe mental health issues which would be dangerously exacerbated following the trauma of pregnancy and childbirth
          – Women who have already had children and whose physical health has suffered greatly as a result
          – etc.

          It is a brutal reality, and ideally it would never be necessary, but some times it is. Abortion happens. If that makes you uncomfortable, well don’t have one. But we can’t continue to limit access.

          1. ahjayzis

            Abortion is illegal only for poorer women in Ireland.

            The Abortion Support Network in the UK are a charity that help with the cost of travel for women getting to England, if anyone’s interested in signing up to help;


        2. Cian

          A time limit on divorce should *never* have been in the constitution – in my opinion.

          Similarly,the Abortion referendum should either be to repeal the 8th, or replaced with a vague “legislation regarding the availability of abortion must be passed by the Dail”. They should not try to add specific reasons for abortion into the constitution.

  1. Panty Christ

    Gov will dissolve itself just before the final signature gets blotted down to finally set a date.. just as they planned. Fudged.

    1. Frilly Keane


      The FFERS are already into their Conventions
      And the Blueshurts have started with their roll out with the LPT promise

    1. bisted

      …careful now gorugeen…you are supposed to say ‘praise be his noodley appendiges’ when you invoke FSM…otherwise it’s blasphemous…

      1. gorugeen

        Quite right you are Bisted. How remiss of me. Praise be to his noodly appendages…. blasphemy corrected.

    2. Frilly Keane

      That’ll be a good around here
      The in-house Moderation team will have to take on subbies to help out with the potty twinkle sparkling washing

    1. rotide

      Don’t be silly, the usual lunatics are already formulating conspiracy theories based on nothing but thin air (see panty christ above for an example)

      Of course Leo is still the devil incarnate.

  2. Sheik Yahbouti

    They can stick their “indicative schedule” up their collective botty. No sign of referendum on water. BTW, I’m pro choice, but the ‘rosaries/ovaries’ line is so clumsy and clunky – just crap.

      1. Bertie Blenkinsop

        I’m a big fan of
        “can’t complain, mustn’t grumble, help yourself to another piece of Apple crumble…”

        1. Shayna

          Also, does anyone know what’s the story at Waterford Whispers News – is it end of days? Their site appears to be down.

          1. Frilly Keane

            They still haven’t got over loosing themselves
            They haven’t coped as well with this one
            They’ve run out of Gleesons too

            As Cian and the UpDeDeise bhiys would say one time
            Don’t stop believing

      2. Milo

        The slogan is not designed to change minds, its just a gleeful opportunity to have a go at those who are religious. Lets see how that works in the campaign. Nice and divisive already.

        1. Daisy Chainsaw

          The religious only account for a few thousand these days. Most “catholics” go twice a year, or a few more when the little one is making communion and there’s a bouncy castle to be hired.

          1. ahjayzis

            How do you parse that with the gigantic vote against hierarchy and doctrine for marriage equality, NJ? Or the use of contraceptives and cohabitation for that matter?

            Is mass attendance an indication of anything other than a social / community thing in small communities? Attendance is barely in the double figures in Dublin like.

          2. Daisy Chainsaw

            Where’s the bigotry in pointing out that Bouncy Castle Catholics aren’t really catholic by the standard imposed? Most people do the communion day for the party, not for the haunted bread bit.

            If the church still had any sort of influence we wouldn’t be having half these referenda.

          3. Milo

            Your language is totally bigoted and intentionally so which makes it crueller. The hypocrisy stinks as well as you will be one of the first on here spouting about equality and inclusion. You obviously dislike and dismiss catholics based on their religion, you question their authenticity, you bundle them together and your denigrate their intentions. Thats bigotry. Mocking the communion is just another nasty dig that displays your need to hurt.

          4. Cian

            78% of people identified as RC in the 2016 Census.
            The weekly mass attendance figures seems to hover around the 35% [of Catholics] mark – which would be 1.3 million (again, based on 2016 census).

          5. Daisy Chainsaw

            Because, Milo, I’ve witnessed the hypocrisy of the catholic church and its most devout followers up close. If your god is annoyed with my comments, he’ll murder me himself. There’s written evidence of the billions of killings he’s committed and he’s not adverse to a bit of child murder either, or handing his ,i>own child over to be tortured and slowly, brutally killed for his own self gratification(kinky!!)…

            Why are you worshipping a murderer?

          6. Milo

            Daisy, you words make you a bigot and a hypocrite. You hate people because of their religion.The pathetic/jokey reasons you give just display ignorance as well as a glee in others pain. Maybe youre doing it out of revenge, maybe out of just old fashioned hate. But catholics seem to get the same treatment on BS as Palestinians do in Israel. They are fair game for any humiliation, insult or blatant lies.

            (By the way, the Bible is just a book. People believe it- its not “written evidence”.) Shh.

          7. newsjustin

            Happy to be corrected on that Cian. I think your calcs look right. As you know – hard to get reliable mass attendance stats (I’m not sure they’re needed for anything to be fair).

    1. Bill

      They seem to think anybody with an opinion that differs to them are religious, bigots, alt-rights etc.. but in reality its just someone who has a different opinion to life than they do.

      1. Brother Barnabas

        I don’t see where they say that, Bill. There are lots of reasons why some people are anti-choice. Religious conviction is one – but it’s probably the most objectionable.

          1. catsiglierie

            You clearly need to look at Humanism again. The key message (if there can be said to be one, given its openness to plurality) is that we as human beings may only find peace and happiness here on earth and in/with/through/because of other human beings and through our existence as living, temporary beings in this form. This suggests that, as medicine and science have developed, we as humans can understand our bodies better and are capable of intervening before things go wrong – so we can perform abortions when the woman’s life is endangered but before she dies. – Humanism 101.

            Or, to put it in non-Humanist terms, God is wonderful, it has given us such great wisdom and the ability to learn and grow as a species (because we are the chosen ones, not the ducks, or gerbils, or the delicious, delicious chickens of course)…etc. This includes reality television, iPhones, guns, chemotherapy, and abortions. We must use everything it has given us in the best way we think possible. There is a justification for the use of all of these things at some point (I find it particularly difficult to admit to the use of guns, but I will not close my mind off to the possibility that someone else may be able to justify a time to use such an object in a positive fashion). Which is to say, abortion is one of God’s many gifts to humanity (if you are so inclined), and who are you to presume to understand God’s infinite wisdom so that you can comfortably dismiss one of the gifts bestowed upon our petty, mortal souls?

            Whichever way you spin it, the ultimate conclusion is that there exists and ethical framework for abortion (either within Humanism or any religion).

            But don’t worry, if that makes you uncomfortable we also have personal freedom and choice, so, how about you don’t have an abortion?

            And this isn’t even to touch on the ‘value’ of procreating and it’s ethical implications which you appear to take for granted (although I’m open for correction, of course).

          2. ahjayzis

            They’re not floating in a tank.

            No need for basic human decency to see the value in not treating a grown woman as a growbag.

  3. Charger Salmons

    It’s funny how everyone thinks referendums are great in Ireland but an absolute disaster when the British people have one and vote for Brexit making them all racist,xenophobic Little Englanders.

    1. Shayna

      Could I just add, referenda are a slight on how we vote. A political topic of the day is used to sway one’s vote. I do vote, always used my voting right., it may appear pointless, recently in The North, it’s kinda pointless.
      I’ve never been a fan of the term “Nordie”.. – as an aside.

      1. Frilly Keane

        Maybe you should contact the Referendum Crowd and get Nordie included to the wording of the Blasphemous Referendum

        I’d be all for keeping it mind

        1. Brother Barnabas

          Note quite, DavidT. It’s a Latin word. And because Latin doesn’t allow for plural gerund, trying to make a plural by adding ‘s’ introduces a different meaning. Adding an ‘s’ pluralises the act of voting, not the actual ballot. So ‘referendums’ would mean more than one ballot on the same issue, which isn’t the meaning we intend (unless you’re referring to a previous abortion referendum, then yes). The alternative – referenda – means a single vote for more than one different issue. So the referendum on the Seanad abolition and establishment of Court of Appeal was actually a referenda.
          So both are equally wrong (or equally wrong if we decide ‘referendum’ is now an English word and we can pluralise it either way). Or we could use ‘plebiscites’.

          1. David

            Fair enough, well put.

            From a Spectator article:

            “The OED says referendum is either from ‘classical Latin referendum, gerund or neuter gerundive of referre’. It doesn’t insist. Its 1989 edition had said: ‘referendums is logically preferable as a modern plural form meaning “ballots on one issue” (as a Latin gerund referendum has no plural); the Latin plural gerundive referenda, meaning “things to be referred”, necessarily connotes a plurality of issues’. It thought referendums would prevail. A revision in 2009 found usage ‘fairly evenly divided’. It judged the appeal to plurality of issues ‘unlikely to affect actual usage’. More’s the pity. Gerund or gerundive, the plural in English must be referendums.”

    2. Brother Barnabas

      Nothing to do with the vote, Charger. It was the result and the reasoning applied, which did show up the majority of Brits as being parochial and ignorant, and generally lacking the intellectual nous to properly understand the issue before them and the repercussions of their decision. Like a bunch of toddlers voting for more lemonade.

      1. Charger Salmons

        Ah,I see.
        All the 52% were thick and only the 48% really had a clue what Brexit was all about.
        Did you ever stop condescending to wonder how many of those ” parochial and ignorant ” Brits were actually Irish leavers entitled to vote in the Referendum ?
        You know,the tens of thousands forced to leave Ireland because their own politicians failed them – the same politicians now railing against the country that once again mopped up their mistakes?
        But don’t worry – the French and Germans will look after Ireland.
        Unified corporate tax rate and EU Army anyone ?

        1. Brother Barnabas

          Seeing as 18% of the UK’s electorate are either Irish or claim Irish ethnicity (however tenuous), it’s a stretch to blame us for your stupidity on this front. And almost three-quarters of them live in London the home counties, so, if anything, contributed to the remain vote.

          1. Charger Salmons

            But you don’t know which way they voted.
            You’re just presuming they all voted Remain when they might just have voted Leave.
            Condescending again I see.
            The Irish figure prominently in working class areas which on the whole voted to Leave.

          2. Brother Barnabas

            Not according to the last census, charger.

            You don’t really know what you’re talking about, do you?

            All bluster and ignorance. You’re essentially a Little England stereotype. It’s unfortunate and unpalatable.

    1. newsjustin

      From a pro life point of view, the more extreme the proposed changes, the better. As it’ll be rejected.

      But I suspect the government will craft something a bit milder so it has some shot at passing.

      1. Daisy Chainsaw

        If it is rejected, what do antichoice hypocrites like yourself plan to do about the 3000 Irish abortions a year? Will you move on to getting the 13th repealed so women will have to prove prepregnancy before being given permission to leave the country?

        1. newsjustin

          I thought we agreed that we’d both look at this campaign after the thread to the 8th Amendment had passed?

      2. scottser

        the govt put much store on the recommendations of the constitutional assembly at the time. they will have no choice but to implement those recommendations in full, despite what their own back-benchers think. the government also have a handy scapegoat in the CA in that the recommendations are not of their conception but in the interests of democracy they will implement them, yada yada.

        1. newsjustin

          Do pro choice people really think the voters will pass what the CA suggested? That those proposals would survive a referendum battle? Fair enough if people think they will. I honestly can’t see it.

          1. TheRealJane

            Who knows? Not everyone thinks that women should be tortured for the worship of an imaginary old man in the sky who hates abortion but refuses to do anything about it, despite being omnipotent.

          2. Milo

            Ah, if it were only that simple. I think you are confusing your hatred of Catholics with the desire for bodily autonomy for women. Or maybe in your mind they are the same thing?

          3. David

            Is the CA a typical cross-section? It’s supposed to be.

            Could you see anti-abortion people recusing themselves from the assembly?

            What’s peoples’ thoughts on the make-up of the CA?

          4. MoyestWithExcitement

            “Do pro choice people really think the voters will pass what the CA suggested? That those proposals would survive a referendum battle? Fair enough if people think they will. I honestly can’t see it.”

            Yeah but you *insisted* that someone actually use the word ‘destroy’ so you could get one over on a pro choicer. You’re *heavily* emotionally invested in this. I don’t think anyone needs to pay heed to your opinion on what the Irish electorate thinks about abortion. You’re a *teency* bit biased. The CA was a cross section of Irish society. If the CA recommended that, there’s a very good chance the Irish people will vote for it. You’re in a minority, Justin. Ireland is slowly freeing itself of the evil inflicted on us by that church.

          5. TheRealJane

            *Ah, if it were only that simple. I think you are confusing your hatred of Catholics with the desire for bodily autonomy for women. Or maybe in your mind they are the same thing?*

            It is that simple though. If you think that women are competent to decide whether to carry a pregnancy in their own body to term, than the answer is clear. If you think women are not competent to make this decision, you can’t also argue that it comes from a position of respect for women.

            And yes, I think the weight of history is behind me when I state that the Catholic Church sees women as a mildly imbecilic means to an end rather than an end in themselves.

          6. Milo

            It will be a shame if people allow their hate of the church define how they campaign. Many catholics will vote for repeal on compassionate grounds, that happened in the gay marriage referendum. They are not all the monsters that they are painted to be on here. But if you’re still stuck in a battle against the church instead of for bodily autonomy, then you will do more damage than good and cause more division than needed.

  4. TheRealJane

    Abortion, divorce and blasphemy? I’d say Quinner is cancelling all appointments for the next 12 months.

  5. :-J

    (Repeal)- Hey jesus freaks!… STOP trying to control the minds of people by manipulating society and families through the matriarch and how they choose to use their sexual reproductive organs….

    (Jesus Freaks)- Boooooo!!!! Down with this sort of thing!. Our god says save the 8th! .. Remember Jesus?.. He saves too!….Eamon..

    Well, I tried to save the 8th last night…. but I was watching the late great Christopher Hitchens riff on about a cult of suffering run by some lunatic nun… I just couldnt stop laughing….
    .. after about five minutes in, basically I had nothing left.

    Good times were had all round though, yes indeed…


  6. DavidT

    I’ll vote yes to repeal. The citizens’ assembly decision reflects, in the main, the opinion of people I know. Funny, that.

  7. The Ghost of Starina

    You know what would reduce the incidence of abortions in Ireland?

    If the Catholic Church stopped advocating the pull-out method as a form of contraception.

    How ya like THEM apples?!

    1. Milo

      Where do they advocate that? And what evidence do you have that it would work? Or is it just another gratuitous go at catholics?

        1. Milo

          Not very often. Anyway, do you want to answer the questions or are you just here to have a go at catholics? Theres a few bigots on here so youre in good company.

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