Support for Seanad abolition declines to 49% - poll

Over a third of voters want to retain upper house in referendum vote

Support for the abolition of the Seanad has declined with just under half of voters supporting the proposed referendum, a new poll has found.  Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Support for the abolition of the Seanad has declined with just under half of voters supporting the proposed referendum, a new poll has found. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Fri, Aug 9, 2013, 12:01

Support for the abolition of the Seanad has declined with just under half of voters indicating a Yes vote for the referendum, a new poll has found.

Support for removal of the upper house has fallen by 3 percentage points since a June poll to 49 per cent,the Paddy Power survey conducted by Red C said.

There has been an increase in voters who would like to retain the Seanad. Just over a third (36 per cent) of those polled would vote to keep it, an increase of 2 percentage points. Those uncertain about how they would vote has increased slightly, by one percentge point to 15 per cent.

The poll for the bookmaker, asking voters whether they would vote Yes abolishing the Seanad or No to keep the upper house , was carried out on a random sample of 1,002 adults by landline and mobile phone between Monday and Wednesday of this week.

When the ’don’t knows’ are removed the majority (58 per cent) would support the referendum with 42 per cent against the vote.

The highest support for abolishing the Seanad comes from Fine Gael (63 per cent) and Sinn Féin (67 per cent) voters. Fianna Fáil (53 per cent) voters are most likely to oppose the measure. Labour and Independents are more divided with 60 per cent of Labour voters and 52 per cent of Independent voters indicating a Yes vote .

Geographically the greatest support for the referendum includes Enda Kenny’s west of Ireland stronghold with Connaught and Ulster leading the Yes voters with 67 per cent in favour. Voters in the capital are evenly split between Yes and No.

The referendum on the abolition of the Seanad is due to be held on October 4th.