Jason OMahony - Irish political blogger, Irish politics, EU politics
 

Why not a preferendum? A what?

Posted by Jason O on Dec 2, 2012 in Irish Politics |

One of the most annoying parts of the abortion debate in Ireland is the constant decrying of  ”it’s a very divisive issue!” as an excuse for avoiding doing anything. Yet the reality is that it is a very divisive issue with the population divided from no abortion in any case to abortion on demand, and with a parliament struggling to square the circle and not piss off one group or another.

Why not have a preferendum? What’s that? It’s where a referendum has more than just a Yes/No answer. Why not put four or five options on a ballot paper, therefore allowing every voter a chance of voting for what they really want and then transferring to what they will accept, until one option gets 50% support. It’s how we vote in presidential elections, so why not on an issue as contentious as this?

At least the answer will be clear, decisive, and supported by a majority of those who vote, and everybody from SPUC to Ivana Bacik will have an opportunity to get their favoured option proposed directly to the people.

2 Comments

Pidge
Dec 2, 2012 at 7:08 pm

Often wondered about this. Would a preferendum be constitutional?


 
Jason O
Dec 2, 2012 at 8:22 pm

I think article 47 just says that a proposal must have a majority of votes cast.


 

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