Ireland’s same-sex marriage vote: Massive turnout as Irish nationals fly home to participate in historic referendum

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It’s the world’s first national referendum on same-sex marriage.

The polls in the The Republic of Ireland opened on Friday morning and turnout is said to be higher than in previous public votes.

The electorate has turned out especially early in urban areas, with greater Dublin reporting 20% of votes cast before lunch. On the other hand, turnout is slow in the more rural areas, which is thought to benefit the ‘Yes’ vote.

Should the majority of the country say ‘Yes’ to the Marriage Equality Bill, it will be enshrined in the constitution and same-sex couples will be free to marry.

Irish people living the UK have flocked back to home to participate in the historic vote, with many tweeting under the hashtag #hometovote.

And the ‘Yes’ campaign is receiving widespread support from all around the world on the internet – from Stephen Fry to Sarah Silverman.

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