Ireland Exit Poll Shows Voters Set To Repeal Abortion Ban

An early exit poll suggests a big win for Ireland's Yes Campaign.

What you need to know
  • Times/Ipsos MRBI exit poll predicts 68 percent of voters in favour of repealing abortion ban.
  • Yes vote highest in nation's capital Dublin where 77 percent supported it, poll predicts.
  • Official result from the historic referendum expected to be declared later today.

An exit poll suggests Ireland is set to change its constitution so that abortion can be legalised in what would be an historic moment in the traditionally Catholic nation.

The Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI exit poll, conducted after the referendum on Friday local time, indicated 68 percent of voters backed the constitutional amendment while 32 percent opposed it.

Seventy percent of women polled as they left voting booths supported changing the country's constitution, with 65 percent of men also backing the 'Yes' Campaign, the poll predicted.

According to poll, the highest Yes vote was in the nation's capital Dublin where 77 per cent of voters backed repealing the Eighth Amendment.

More than 4,500 voters were interviewed for the poll at 160 locations across every constituency as they left voting stations.

If the prediction is accurate, it would mean a landslide victory for the Yes side after a long and polarising campaign to remove the constitutional ban on abortions except in cases where the mother's life is in danger.

A resounding Yes win would mean a big swing towards liberalising abortion occurred in the final days of the campaign, which saw street rallies and even expats flying home to Ireland to cast their votes.

The campaign's final days also witnessed a big social media push backing the repeal, with the #hometovote hashtag trending on Twitter and many people taking to social platforms in shirts emblazoned with the “Repeal” slogan.

Ireland's Health Minister Simon Harris has said that if the referendum is successful he would introduce legislation allowing abortion on request for up to 12 weeks in pregnancy.

Ireland Referendum Celebration