Varadkar says Eighth Amendment referendum could come down to 'one vote in every ballot box'

Both sides are out canvassing across the country this weekend in a bid to win over voters

Varadkar says Eighth Amendment referendum could come down to 'one vote in every ballot box'

Leo Varadkar. Photo: Sam Boal/

Updated 13.50

The Taoiseach has said the Eighth Amendment vote could come down to 'one vote in every ballot box'.

Leo Varadkar was canvassing in support of a 'Yes' vote in Tullamore today, as both sides enter the final stretch of campaigning.

The Taoiseach's comments come as the latest opinion polls suggest the 'Yes' campaign still leads.

With only five days of campaigning left until polling days, two Sunday papers have commissioned polls in a bid to see where things stand. 

A Sunday Times / Behaviour and Attitudes poll of 935 people between May 3rd and 15th shows a five point increase for the 'Yes' vote in urban areas.

That includes a surge of 12 points in Dublin to 67%, while the numbers are also up 11 points to 54% in the rest of Leinster.

Posters in Dublin city centre. Picture by: Niall Carson/PA Wire/PA Images

Meanwhile, a Sunday Business Post / Red C poll of a thousand adults between May 10th and 16th also has the 'Yes' campaign ahead - up three points to 56%, with the 'No' side up one to 27%.

However, that paper's Political Editor Michael Brennan says the figures shifted somewhat when people were asked what way their friends would vote. 

He explained: "Interestingly, Red C - our polling company - has done an analysis asking people how do they think their neighbours or their friends [will vote] and [from] listening to the campaign, what they think the outcome will be... we get a much tighter vote.

"The result from that type of polling - known as the 'wisdom of crowds' - is 56% Yes, 44% No."


Supporters of both retaining and repealing the Eighth Amendment are out across the country this weekend in a bid to win over voters ahead of Friday's poll.

The parents of Savita Halappanavar have today called for a Yes vote in next Friday's referendum.

Spokespeople from both sides, meanwhile, spoke to Newstalk's Between the Lines programme.

Ailbhe Smyth from Together For Yes says abortion is already here and we need to make it safe.

She argued: "We do have abortion in Ireland - just as you and I are speaking here this morning, there is a woman perhaps thinking can she obtain the abortion pill online because she's in a desperate situation.

"There may be another woman taking that pill on her own, in her bathroom, without any medical support - and I think that's a very important point, that we need to recognise that reality."

John McGuirk, Save the 8th Communications Director, suggests every abortion case is a sign that we have failed the woman involved.

He said: "Every single time that happens, it is because somebody in that woman's life has failed her. Maybe a partner or boyfriend has abandoned her and said 'you're on your own'... maybe parents have said 'you're going to ruin your life, you need to get rid of the baby... maybe it's the State doesn't provide her with the supports she needs."

He added: "Every single one of those abortions we should see in our country as a failure, because we are leaving someone in a situation where they feel they have no other option."

The Eighth Amendment referendum is being held on Friday May 25th.