Al Jazeera America, BBC and France 24 have reported this morning that leaders on both sides of Ireland’s same sex marriage referendum say the “yes” side has won a resounding victory. Not all the voted have been counted but both sides of the issue say same sex marriage will be the law of the land by night fall.
Senior figures from the “No” campaign, who sought to prevent Ireland’s constitution from being amended to permit gay marriage, say the only question on Saturday is how large the “Yes” side’s margin of victory will be from Friday’s vote.
Leo Varadkar, an Irish Cabinet minister who came out as gay at the start of the government’s campaign, said Dublin looked to have voted about 70 percent in favor of gay marriage, while most districts outside the capital also were reporting strong “Yes” leads.
More than 3.2m people were asked whether they wanted to amend the country’s constitution to allow gay and lesbian couples to marry. Government ministers have said they believe it will pass, and that would make Ireland the first country to legalise same-sex marriage through a popular vote.
But it seems that France might be the next country where a national vote would embrace same sex marriage.
This week a measure, approved in the National Assembly in a 329-to-229 vote, puts France on course to join nearly a dozen mostly European nations that allow gay marriage and comes despite a string of recent demonstrations by opponents of the so-called “marriage for all” bill.
The Netherlands, Belgium, Norway and Spain, as well as Argentina, Canada and South Africa have authorised gay marriage, along with nine US states and the District of Columbia.