Iona Institute's David Quinn: Yes Side "Favourites to Win" Referendum

iona david quinn

The Director of The Iona Institute, David Quinn, said that there is “no question” that the Yes side “favourite to win” the marriage referendum.


Speaking on Newstalk yesterday, David Quinn admitted that the No camp winning the referendum is unlikely. “The Yes side has a big lead… a very substantial lead. I don’t know how solid the lead is,” he said.  “They have all the political parties on their side. Every second celebrity seems to be on their side. They will spend a lot more money, most of academia is on their side. You would have to make them favourites to win, there’s no question about that.”

“There is a chance the No side will win if the argument can be put convincingly to people,” he added.

Campaigners have warned that Quinn’s comments may be an attempt at encouraging complacency among the Yes camp.

Quinn also made an argument against Amnesty Ireland, who he condemned for campaigning for a Yes vote.

“Iona will not be campaigning as such, in the sense of posters and leafleting… we’ll be doing none of that because we’re a charity and so far as I know we’re precluded. However, I know Amnesty Ireland is a charity… and they had an event yesterday calling for a Yes vote.”

David is on the advisory board of a non-charitable campaigning organisation Mothers and Fathers Matter that is not precluded from campaigning against the referendum.

“I’ll obviously be doing radio and television… but the main campaign organisation will be Mothers and Fathers Matter. I’m on the advisory board… That’s a cross-denominational, non-denominational outfit which includes agnostics, gay people, Protestants, etc.

“Nobody can pretend that a section of the constitution called the family has nothing to do with children. Marriage is only mentioned in the context of the article called the family. We’re being asked to redefine family.”

Quinn said that he does support civil partnerships for gay people, and also straight people, along with siblings… He believes that elderly siblings who have lived together all of their lives could be allowed to enter into a civil partnership so they wouldn’t have to pay inheritance tax.

He also said that he supports the proposed conscience clause that would allow businesses to discrimate against gay people based on their religious beliefs, saying “a more moderate government would recognise that there is a decent case for not penalising people who run businesses but do not believe in same-sex marriage.”

You can listen to the entire interview here:

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