Exit polls report landslide victory for repealing the 8th Amendment
Exit polls last night reported a landslide victory of 68% to 32% in favour of repealing the eighth amendment to the Irish constitution, and removing the legal impediment to access to abortion.
The Irish times Exit poll reported a 68% result for Yes, while the RTÉ poll reported 69.4%. Either way, it is a stunning victory for the Repeal campaigners, especially as the gap had appeared to close in recent weeks.
We will know the full result this evening, but if it is borne out, it will mean women in Ireland have the right to terminate a pregnancy within the first 12 weeks, though restrictions will remain from that point onwards.
It will also mean that Northern Ireland retains the most restrictive abortion rights in Western Europe. Campaigners in the UK welcomed the Irish result, and said it was time for the British Government to resolve the critical situation in the North, where women are forced to travel to England to access their reproductive rights. The situation in the North was recently described by the United Nations as ‘[constituting] violence that may amount to torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment’, and has also been condemned by Amnesty International.