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TDs move to force abortion referendum

POLITICAL efforts are under way to force a referendum on the Government's proposed abortion legislation.

Fine Gael, Labour and Independent TDs and Senators are trying to use Article 27 of the Constitution, under which the President can decline to sign a Bill until it is approved by referendum if he is petitioned by a third of the Dail and a majority of the Seanad, the Sunday Independent reported.

But even if the required numbers backed the move, it would still fall to him to decide whether to require a referendum.

However, Junior Finance Minister Brian Hayes predicted that the vast majority of the FG parliamentary party would back the legislation.