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15.29 23 Mar 2015


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A leading No campaigner in the same-sex marriage referendum says "there's no question" the Yes side has a big lead.

David Quinn of the Iona Institute says the No camp will continue to try to make their argument convincingly before the referendum in May.

He believes the Yes campaign has a lot of muscle behind it, but he is not giving up.

Speaking to Sean Moncrieff this afternoon, Mr Quinn said, "Iona will not be campaigning as such, in the sense of posters and leafleting... we'll be doing none of that because we're a charity and so far as I know we're precluded. However I know Amnesty Ireland is a charity... and they had an event yesterday calling for a Yes vote.

"I'll obviously be doing radio and television... but the main campaign organisation with be Mothers and Fathers Matter... That's a cross-denominational, non-denominational outfit."

On the referendum itself, he said, "the Yes side has a big lead... a very substantial lead. I don't know how solid the lead is. They have all the political parties on their side. Every second celebrity seems to be on their side. They will spend a lot more money, most of academia is on their side. You would have to make them favourites to win, there's no question about that," he said.

"There is a chance the No side will win if the argument can be put convincingly to people," he added.

Mr Quinn's comments came as the Yes Equality group welcomed figures showing support for same-sex marriage at 78%.

According to an Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI “Family Values” opinion poll, 89% of under 35s are expected to give a 'yes' vote in favour of marriage equality, compared to 61% of over 55s.

Jeanne McDonagh, Yes Equality spokesperson, urged young people to engage with adults of all ages about the benefits of marriage equality to ensure the bill is passed on May 22nd:

Meanwhile the Tánaiste has ruled out a so-called 'conscience clause' for opponents of same-sex marriage.

Joan Burton says she cannot see any circumstances where businesses would still be allowed to discriminate on the basis of their own beliefs. You can read more about her comments here.

Originally posted at 15.26


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