Voters have opted to remove the constitutional right to life of the unborn from the Constitution, according to referendum exit polls. The vote will pave the way for legislation that will permit abortion on demand up to 12 weeks.
The RTÉ poll suggests a large majority have voted to change the Constitution. It found that 69.4% of people voted to repeal the Eighth Amendment which recognised the equal right to life of the mother and the unborn child. Some 30.6% voted to retain this article in the Constitution, according to the poll.
The findings were compiled from interviews with more than 3,800 people at 175 polling stations across the country. It showed that 72% of women voted for repeal of the right to life and 65% of men did.
The margin of error is 1.6%.
Reacting to the exit poll John McGuirk – Communications Director of the Save the Eighth campaign – tweeted to say “the 8th did not create an unborn child’s right to life – it merely acknowledged it. The right exists, independent of what a majority says”.
Official counting of votes takes place at count centres across the country. A final result is expected by late afternoon.