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save the 8th

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As the counts continue to climb in favour of a Yes vote in Ireland's historic referendum to repeal the 8th amendment to the constitution, the No campaign are having their say. 

In a statement on their website, the Save The 8th campaign thanked their canvassers and no voters for their campaigning throughout the divisive referendum.

Using emotive language, the Save the 8th side called today's outcome a 'tragedy,' and maintained that they will continue to oppose abortion rights in Ireland. 

'What Irish voters did yesterday is a tragedy of historic proportions. However, a wrong does not become right simply because a majority support it,' the statement reads.

'We are so proud of all of those who stood with us in this campaign – our supporters, our donors, our families, and our loved ones. This campaign took a huge personal toll on all of us who were involved, and we have been so grateful for their support.'

'The unborn child no longer has a right to life recognised by the Irish state. Shortly, legislation will be introduced that will allow babies to be killed in our country.'

 

A post shared by #savethe8th (@savethe8th) on

'We will oppose that legislation. If and when abortion clinics are opened in Ireland, because of the inability of the Government to keep their promise about a GP led service, we will oppose that as well. Every time an unborn child has his or her life ended in Ireland, we will oppose that, and make our voices known.'

'Abortion was wrong yesterday. It remains wrong today. The constitution has changed, but the facts have not.'

Exit polls predict a 70/30 outcome in favour of repealing the 8th amendment today. 

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Over the past 15 hours, 3.3 million Irish citizens had the opportunity to vote in the referendum to repeal or maintain the 8th amendment. 

As of 10pm, the polls are closed, and everyone has cast their vote in the ballot box to be counted tomorrow. 

Early reports showed that this referendum has had an exceptionally high voter turn out – here's what some of the voters had to say on this historic day:

 

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The final countdown to the referendum to Repeal the 8th Amendment to the constitution is on, with just three sleeps to go before Ireland gets the opportunity to maintain or do away with the legislation which prevents women from legally acquiring abortion healthcare on Irish soil. 

If you are planning to vote in the upcoming referendum (which we encourage everyone to do so) then there are a few things to keep in mind before your stroll, drive or public transport commute to your polling station. 

The polling stations are open from 7am to 10pm so make the time to get down there before or after work, or during lunch time. 

 

A post shared by Together for Yes (@together4yes) on

First up – do not wear a Repeal or Save the 8th jumper, or any clothing, badges or accessories with the words yes or no on them.  

Clothing with campaign slogans could be seen as canvassing, and canvassing at a polling station is considered an offence. 

It's up to the discretion of the presiding polling station officer to decide if your jumper or badge is 'canvassing' but just to be safe, leave them at home. 

Next do not forget your polling card, as having your allotted card with you on the day speeds up your check-in process while also allowing you to vote. 

Photography by Saibh Egan | Galway Pro-Choice members at the Abortion Rights Campaign

If you don't have a polling card, a passport, a drivers license, a student ID containing a photograph (student travel cards not accepted) or a public services card will suffice. Age Cards are not listed as accepted. 

Bring a form of the above ID even if you have a polling card, as there is a chance you will be asked.

Don't take any pictures in the polling station, and DEFINITELY don't take any images inside the booth, of either you or your vote. 

As for the vote itself, make sure it gets stamped by polling station staff. 

 

A post shared by #savethe8th (@savethe8th) on

The question will read: 'Do you approve of the proposal to amend the Constitution contained in the undermentioned Bill?'

Put an X in the box for Yes or No and don't doodle on the paper or write any messages. There should be two pen strokes on that paper making up your X and that is is, or you risk spoiling your vote. 

And just put and X to indicate your vote, not a tick and don't colour in the box you want. 

If you make an honest mistake, you can ask for a new ballot slip as long as you haven't already put it in the ballot box. 

Show the back of your ballot paper to the local [polling official, fold it in half, and place it into the sealed ballot box. Job done. 

You can take your selfie in your campaign merch when you get home and share words of encouragement to others online about how they need to get out and vote that day. 

The day after the vote, the ballot boxes will be opened and counted. 

Feature image: Photography by Saibh Egan | Galway Pro-Choice members at the Abortion Rights Campaign

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In the final stretch of the referendum debate, both sides have stepped up their campaigning methods. 

An Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI opinion poll has found that a mere eight days before the referendum, the Yes side are retaining a lead. 

Those who know how they will vote are split 58% Yes to 42% No.

 

A post shared by Together for Yes (@together4yes) on

However 17% of people who responded said they were on the middle ground. 

With that break down, the poll shows that 44% will vote Yes, 32% will vote No, and a further 5% will not be voting. 

2% declined to respond. 

Support for the Yes vote has declined slightly since the last poll conducted by The Irish Times

According to The Irish Times. women and people from urban areas are most in favour of repeal. 

Farmers and those from 'the poorest households'  stand with No majorities.

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Today, Tuesday marks the deadline for people to register to vote in the upcoming referendum to repeal or maintain the current Eighth Amendment.

Anyone who is not registered needs to complete an RFA2 form, have it signed and witnessed at a garda station, and then return it by post or by hand to a local city or county council.

You cannot register online.

You will require a form RFA2 if you are not currently on the electoral register.

Form RFA3 needs to be filled if you have changed your address and wish to vote at your new address.

Form RFA5 is required if you have now become an Irish citizen and wish to be eligible to vote in all elections or referendums.

People are only eligible to vote in referendums if they are an Irish citizen living in the Republic of Ireland, or have been out of the country for less than 18 months.

Do not forget the completed form must be brought to your local Garda station, along with valid photo ID. 

To complete the process, the form will need to be signed and stamped with the station stamp, by a member of Gardai.

Application forms are available from local authorities or on the checktheregister.ie website.

It comes as figures from the National Youth Council of Ireland (NYCI) show up to 150,000 young people are not registered to vote.

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