THE Government was given a possible taste of things to come when it was defeated in a Seanad vote tonight.
The Coalition suffered a rare defeat in the Upper House - by 27 votes to 23 - on bill from Senator Feargal Quinn on upward only rent reviews.
It means the bill will now be sent back to the Dail, although it is likely to be defeated there. It is understood tonight's vote is the first time the Government has lost a vote during this Seanad, although Cathoirleach Paddy Burke had to use his casting vote.
It is understood a number of Labour senators were missing for the vote. Government senators have already warned they could vote against the Coalition if the Seanad is abolished in this weeks' referendum.
Fiach Kelly Political Correspondent