Wording for marriage referendum revealed
'Marriage may be contracted in accordance with law by two persons without distinction as to their sex'.
That short sentence will be put before voters on a date next May which is yet to be named. The Government opted for the simplest possible formula in the hope that it can avoid complex and many-sided arguments which occurred in past referendums. Opponents instantly said it was "unfair over-simplification."
All of the main parties - Fine Gael, Labour, Fianna Fail, and Sinn Fein - have given the measure their full backing and pledged to canvass for a "Yes".
Those supporting a "Yes" in the referendum say people are simply being asked: "Do you think homosexual people should have the same right to marriage as heterosexual people?"
But those advocating a "No" insist this is a gross over-simplification. Independent Senator Rónán Mullen said the vote is not about marriage equality. Mr Mullen said voting "Yes" would mean that neither law nor constitution could in future help ensure children had a mother and father wherever possible.