On May 22, Ireland could be the first country in the world to legalize same sex marriage via a public referendum.
To get a sense of how the Irish abroad would vote if given the chance, IrishCentral conducted a reader poll yesterday between 8am EDT and 2pm EDT on Tuesday, May 19. 1,521 responded. Here are the results:
Combining the Irish diaspora votes only, 72% were in favor of marriage equality and 28% were opposed.
This puts the diaspora firmly in the 'Yes' camp.
When those who voted from Ireland were added to the tally the percentages were the same – 72% (1,093) said they would vote in favor of the marriage equality referendum. Conversely, 28% (428) respondents said they would vote 'No.'
Geographically, readers in the US accounted for the greatest number of participants at 38% (577). Readers in the US were slightly more likely to vote no, though the significant majority were still in favor of same sex marriage in Ireland, with 69% (399) voting 'Yes' and 31% (178) voting 'No.'
The votes of readers in Ireland mirrored the overall poll results exactly, with 72% (328) voting in favor, and 28% (127) voting against.
Outside of the US and Ireland, readers were overwhelmingly in favor of the marriage equality referendum, with 81% (218) voicing their support and 19% (51) voting 'No.' The greatest number of responses (102) came from the UK, where 86% voted 'Yes' and 14% voted 'No.'
Canada and Australia also accounted for a notable number of responses, with Australian readers in favor at 79% 'Yes' and 21% 'No.' Canadian readers voted 74% 'Yes,' 26% 'No.' Other hubs of responses included Spain, France, Germany, Switzerland, Hong Kong, UAE, and New Zealand.These results square well with the polls taken throughout Ireland in recent days. Three opinion polls taken over the weekend showed the 'Yes' vote in the lead.
The Sunday Times interviewed 927 voters between May 1 – 11 and showed the 'Yes' side down 10 points to 63%, 'No,' up four to 26%, and undecided up six to 11%.
The Sunday Business post surveyed 1009 people across Ireland and found that the 'Yes' side at 73%, with 'No' up tp 27% – a 10-point tightening in the race since a poll the previous month.
Millward Brown conducted a poll for Ireland's Sunday Independent, surveying 994 people. Almost 25% of respondents were still undecided. Excluding those, the result was 69% 'Yes,' 31% 'No.'
In IrishCentral’s poll, readers were also asked to rate how important the issue of marriage equality is to them personally. Sixty eight percent rated it “Very important,” 23% “Somewhat important” and 9% “Not important.”